Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Devil's Food Cake with Midnight Ganache

Rose's Heavenly Cakes, page 99: Devil's Food Cake with Midnight Ganache

I'm a little late on this post, but i figured it's better late than never.  I've always wanted to bake this since everyone raved about how awesome this is.  I made the cognac cherries and ganache 8 hours ahead.  

I'm not sure if i like the ganache or if i used 70% chocolate instead of 60%, the ganache ended up quite bitter.  But i added more sugar though or could it be the cherry congac that i added that causes the bitter taste? Or the cocoa powder with water instead of cream causes the bitter taste?  I really don't like it at all. So i added white chocolate to it to mellow it down and sure tasted much better after.  :0   The ganache didn't hardened up at room temperature but only when i placed it in the fridge overnight.  

Making the cake is easy..instructions pretty straight forward.  However, what bugs me the most is that the cake shrank drastically from the sides of the pan. Ok..drastically means about 1/4" from the sides of the pan?  I noticed i have this problem with Rose's chocolate cake recipe. I don't have problems with others but only with Rose's.  Normally that doesn't bother me cos it's for my own consumption, but this time, i wanted to make a box cake with it and it shrank till it doesn't really fit my cake board.    I had the same problem when i baked white velvet cake in the non-stick souffle cups but when i rebaked using APF instead of cake flour, the shrinkage is minimal or rather, normal for what i call cake shrinkage..and not 1/4" away!       

I thought it was me using a 3" high pan instead of 2" so I FB Monica to ask her and she said she has the same problem too.   So can anyone tell me why?  Weak cake structure due to cake flour and mixing method?    I weigh ALL my ingredients and i even time the mixing time mentioned.  So only thing that is wrong is the 3" high pan...

See how far the cake shrank?  

Cognac Cherries.. taste better than i expected! 

See my cake layers...the sides are all so uneven! I never have this with other chocolate cake recipes! Uneven like this means i have to spend a LOT of time trying to get a perfect square with the ganache!   This cake was suppose to be 3 layers (i baked 2x batter)..with one layer for my own consumption. But because the cake shrank from the sides, i had to give up my layer...and make it a 4 layer cake.

So after, spending 3-4 hours ganaching my cake...here it is...as close as perfect square i can get!  

If you are keen to find out what happened to this cake above and what it was decorated into, please check out my other blog post at faithybakes.blogspot.com  to find out what i made with this cake..:)   I post my decorated cakes in the other blog. This blog now only documents my baking experience.  

VERDICT:  I don't know..i gave up my layer so i didn't get to taste it. :((   I only know the cognac cherries tasted great on its own, the cake scrape tasted great on its own and the ganache too..     Conclusion: I HATE HATE HATE shrinking cake!  


Shandy on April 12, 2011 at 10:51 PM said...

Oh, how frustrating! I love how square you were able to get the cake but 4 hours getting the ganache on all layers and the cake to the point of being able to decorate has to push your buttons, I'm sorry. You are amazing for getting the corners so level and crisp.

K'sKronicles on April 12, 2011 at 11:12 PM said...

The final outcome looks great and very delicious..!

Jenn on April 12, 2011 at 11:28 PM said...

Faithy, is that a 9 x3 square pan? I think for butter cakes you can't just switch from round pan to square pan. The volume aren't the same between the two pans. If you want a cake that you can use for any size pans, try genoise. There's moist chocolate genoise in the book.

faithy, the baker on April 12, 2011 at 11:31 PM said...

Thank you ladies! :D
Jenn, it's a 8x3pan. I scale it down one pan size for square pan...so it should be ok. It doesn't matter if it is round or square, even if it is round, it will still shrink the same.

Vicki on April 13, 2011 at 12:03 AM said...

I don't understand why a two inch vs three inch matters but it must because I've gotten myself into trouble with the wrong height. It must affect the crumb structure somehow.

evil cake lady on April 13, 2011 at 3:59 AM said...

your finished cake looks perfectly square, even though it wasn't what you wanted!

Rylan on April 15, 2011 at 1:21 PM said...

Faithy, that was just super fabulous! So dark and devilish! I love how you got all those super sharp corners too!

Anonymous said...

hi faithy, the round long cake you saw is a BAUMKUCHEN. it's a traditional GERMAN cake... you can google it. there shouldn't be any problem in finding an english receipe.

Brandy L on April 20, 2011 at 7:23 AM said...

WOW Faithy! You did an incredible job making this cake look perfectly square! Thanks for sharing this!

Jacque on April 24, 2011 at 10:36 PM said...

I soooo agree with your consensus.
I hate shrinking cakes too and devils food cakes have been my nemesis!

I have begun to make them in larger pans and cut them to size.



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