Monday, September 3, 2012

Mr. Hawthorne's Birthday Cake.

 Photo:  Dorie Greenspan's Baking - From my home to yours

 Mr. Hawthorne's birthday was August 31
and I let him pick out whatever cake he wanted.
This seems to be working well this month.
If you recall,
Youngest Hawthorne picked out his cake as well.

served once again as the cookbook of choice.
Youngest Hawthorne picked the cover cake for his birthday.

After thumbing through the mouth-watering pictures
in the book,
Mr. Hawthorne picked Black-And-White-Chocolate Cake.
A yellow buttermilk cake is filled
with alternating layers of
 delightful white chocolate whipped cream
and decadent dark chocolate pastry cream.

 An excellent choice, Mr. H.

 Cake Ingredients:
2 cups cake flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/8 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
10 TB unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup sugar
3 large eggs
1 large egg yolk
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
3/4 cup buttermilk

Heat oven to 350 degrees.
Butter two 9-x-2-inch round cake pans.
Dust insides with flour,
tapping out excess
and line bottoms with parchment or wax paper.
Place pans on baking sheet.

Sift flour, powder, soda, and salt.
Beat butter on medium speed until soft and creamy.
Add the sugar and beat 3 minutes.
Add eggs, one at a time,
then the yolk, beating for 1 minute after each addition.
Beat in vanilla.
Reduce mixer speed to low
and add the dry ingredients alternately
with the buttermilk.
Add the dry ingredients in 3 additions
and the buttermilk in 2,
beginning and ending with the dry ingredients.
Scrape down sides of bowl as needed and mix
until dry ingredients are incorporated.
Divide batter evenly among pans.

Bake for 28 to 30 minutes,
rotating the pans at the mid-way point.
A tester should come out clean.
Transfer to racks and cool for about 5 minutes,
then unmold, remove the paper, and invert
to cool to room temperature right side up on the rack.

 Sift flour, baking powder,baking soda, and salt.

 Cream butter.

 Add sugar and beat another 3 minutes.

 Add in eggs and yolk one at a time
beating one minute after each addition.
Beat in vanilla.

Add in 1/3 of the dry ingredients.

 1/2 the buttermilk

 Then 1/3 dry.
The rest of the buttermilk.
The rest of the dry ingredients.

 Spread batter evenly into the prepared pans.

 Bake about 30 minutes until tester comes out clean.
Cool in pans on rack 5 minutes.

 Invert right side up on rack.

 Let's start on the Dark Chocolate Cream:
 Ingredients for Dark Chocolate Cream:
2 cups whole milk
4 large egg yolks
6 TB sugar
3 TB cornstarch, sifted
1/4 tsp salt
7 ounces bittersweet chocolate, melted
2 1/2 TB unsalted butter, cut into 5 pieces, room temperature

For the record,
I never have whole milk on hand.
However, I always have skim milk and heavy cream.
I use half skim and half cream
whenever a recipe calls for whole.

In a heavy bottomed saucepan,
whisk the egg yolks with the sugar, cornstarch and salt
until thick and well blended.
Bring milk to a boil.
Whisking, drizzle in about 1/4 cup of the hot milk
to temper the yolks so they won't curdle.
Still whisking,
add the remainder of the milk in a slow, steady stream.
Place over medium heat and,
whisking vigorously,
making sure to get the edges,
bring the mixture to a boil.
Keep at a boil, still whisking, for about 2 minutes.
Remove from heat.

Whisk in the melted chocolate
and let stand 5 minutes.
Whisk in the pieces of butter,
one at a time,
until they are fully incorporated
and the pastry cream is smooth and shiny.
Press plastic wrap against surface
to form an airtight seal.
Refrigerate until chilled.

Eggs in.

Whisk in sugar ...

...  and salt ...

...  and sifted cornstarch.

Whisk until well combined.

Drizzle in hot milk
and cook over medium high heat,
boiling and whisking for about 2 minutes,
until thickened.

Melted bittersweet chocolate in.

Whisk until chocolate is well combined.
Let rest 5 minutes.

Add in butter,
one piece at a time,
whisking to fully incorporate.

You know Rosie and her action shots.

Keep whisking until the chocolate mixture
is smooth and silky.
Cover and refrigerate.

On to the White Chocolate Whipped Cream:

Ingredients for White Chocolate Whipped Cream:
6 ounces white chocolate
1 1/2 cups heavy cream
Put white chocolate in a heatproof bowl
and put bowl over gently simmering water.
Stir frequently to melt chocolate evenly.
Meanwhile bring 1/2 cup of the heavy cream to a boil.
When the chocolate is melted,
remove the bowl from the pan.
Put the hot cream into the melted chocolate
and let it sit for a minute.
Stir gently until smooth.
Let white chocolate mixture sit on counter
until it reaches room temperature.
It can't be the least bit warm 
when you add it to the whipped cream.

When the chocolate mixture is cooled,
beat the remaining 1 cup of heavy cream
until it holds soft peaks.
Turn the machine to high,
add the cooled white chocolate all at once
and continue to beat until the whipped cream holds firm peaks.
Turn cream into a bowl,
press a piece of plastic wrap gently against the surface
to create an airtight seal 
and refrigerate for at least two hours.

When the chocolate is smooth and melted
pour in 1/2 cup hot heavy cream.

Beat remaining cup of heavy cream
until soft peaks form,
then pour in cooled chocolate mixture
all at once.

Here's a Rosie Tip #781:
Whenever you're whipping cream,
it helps to have the bowl and whisk attachment and cream
all cold.
I refrigerate the bowl and whisk for about 30 minutes.
When you're beating eggs,
you want the eggs at room temperature
for better volume.

Beat until stiff peaks form.

Cover with plastic
forming an airtight seal.
Refrigerate at least 2 hours.

For the assembly:
Slice each cake layer horizontally in half.
Place the first layer cut side down on a cake plate
protected with strips of wax paper.

Remove the dark and white chocolate creams
from the refrigerator and whisk each vigorously
to loosen and smooth them.

Spread half the chocolate on the first layer.

Place second layer, cut side up, on top.

Cover with white chocolate.

Cover with a third layer, cut side up,
and spread the rest of the dark chocolate over top.

Top with final layer, cut side down.

Spread remaining white chocolate over top.

I didn't have enough of the white chocolate
to cover the sides,
so I whipped some more heavy cream
and used that to frost the sides.

Pull out the protective wax paper.
I'm decorating the cake with some
bittersweet chocolate shavings.

Happy Birthday, Mr. Hawthorne.

Mr. Hawthorne went off his diet 
for the first time since April
to eat a slice of cake.

Bottom line:
This ranks very high in his list of cakes.
The yellow buttermilk cake has a fine crumb and texture.
Alternating layers of bittersweet chocolate pastry cream
and white chocolate whipped cream
raise this cake to another level.

 Nice and symmetrical.

Oh, who am I kidding?

 My cakes never turn out like Dorie Greenspan's cakes.

Even my chocolate curls suck.

 I got a bunch of those mugs
from the Aztec National Monument in New Mexico.
They're the perfect shape and size.

Most excellent cake.


Marilyn said...

Love on a plate. Happy belated birthday, Mr. Hawthorne!

SweetPhyl said...

Happy Birthday Mr. H! Many happy returns. May I have a slice of your cake? Looks deee-vine!

Rosie Hawthorne said...

The cake is gone, SweetPhyl. You gotta be quick around here.

Mar, Mr. H. says thanks!

Anonymous said...

Good cake. Trying to comment. Again ; ).

Anonymous said...

It worked and, guess what?! It was my fault. I completely ignored the numbers each time so I didn't put them in. That is why I am "notmuchofacook." There are some things I just ignore, to my everlasting dismay and lousy food.

Kathy said...

Appearance is overrated. Taste is much more important. I'd much rather have something that tastes divine than something that's pretty. Besides, your cake looked lovely. Dorie's was too neat. And Happy (belated) Birthday to your handsome hunk.

Lea said...

I agree, taste over looks! Happy Birthday, Mr. H. I hope you enjoyed it!

Rosie Hawthorne said...

Whoot, NMOAC! Glad you're able to comment again.

Rosie Hawthorne said...

Kathy and Lea, those pics in the cookbook have got to be bogus. No way you can do the layers that neat.

Catherine said...

Dear Rosie, What a gorgeous cake! All your cakes are just my opinion your cake looks even better than the cookbook! A lot of love went into this recipe and so I am positive it tasted even better than Dorie Greenspan's cake! Blessings my dear, your friend, Catherine xo

Rosie Hawthorne said...

Catherine, the cake was deeee-vine!
Thanks for commenting.