Chocolate Pavarotti with Wicked Good Ganache

Chocolate Pavarotti with Wicked Good Ganache
Chocolate Pavarotti with Wicked Good Ganache

Week 12! Another chocolate cake but this one is wicked. Why? The ganache has cayenne pepper in it, oh yeah. This recipe was really easy to do but there were a few glitches along the way. First off, the ganache needed to be made 3 to 4 hours in advance. I chose to do it the day before making the cake. One thing Rose says to do is chop the bittersweet chocolate in the food processor. Mine broke while doing this. I hated the thing anyway so I wasn’t too upset about it and bought a new one. The Breville Sous Chef. This one better last.

Ganache Ingredients
Ganache Ingredients

Anything with chocolate is fine by me and using bittersweet chocolate and unsweetened chocolate along with some heavy cream is just decadent.

Wickedly Good Ganache
Wickedly Good Ganache

The cake batter was pretty straight forward too. 

Cake Ingredients
Cake Ingredients

I’m not so sure about the addition of white chocolate though. I don’t care much for it and typically don’t use it but Rose said the it would yield a higher rise and a moister, melt-in-the-mouth texture. Alrighty.

Melting White Chocolate
Melting White Chocolate

The white chocolate is melted and the cocoa powder is combined with boiling water and everything is mixed in the mixer. Easy enough. There was some time to wait for the chocolate to cool a bit though. The cake is only one layer and the 9″ cake pan needs parchment on the bottom along with a cake strip.

Ready to Bake
Ready to Bake

Baking time was right at 40 minutes and it smelled wonderful. Since I made the ganache the day before, I needed to get it a little more workable so I put the bowl over a pan of simmering water for a few minutes. The ganache sets up pretty fast and then it’s impossible to spread it. I really suck at cake decorating so my swirls look really bad.

My Swirls
My Swirls

But the ganache was nice and shiny.

How was it? Well, the cake was very crumbly when cutting and plating. The ganache also wasn’t really sticking to the cake. I probably could have pulled the ganache completely off the cake in one piece. Not sure what happened. Also, I felt that the cake was a tad bit too salty. Even though it was really crumbly, the crumbs were moist enough to stick to the fork but the cake just didn’t have a good texture in my opinion. As for taste, it was good, especially the ganache, but I wanted more chocolate flavor in the cake. I don’t think it will go on my short list of favorite cakes unfortunately.

Next week is the Lemon Possett Shortcakes. These should be good – I love lemon almost as much as blueberries. You can see what the other Alpha Baker’s are doing here. Until next week!

 

25 Comments

  1. This cake has had so many different outcomes; we’re all over the board with this one. Seriously, I would like to know the specific brands Rose used to compare ingredients and percentages. My daughter works for a world wide conglomerate who has a chocolate division and she was telling me there is such a chocolate shortage companies are playing with ingredients under the radar, substituting oils for the cocoa butter and not labeling it as such because it’s considered a substitution, not ingredient change. Sneaky sneaky sneaky.

  2. Glori: You’re right–the ganache “peels” off once it’s firmed up on the cake. I did like the cake, but found it a little dry. I love that ganache with cayenne! So glad to be baking along with you.

  3. Hi Glori, yes, I too noticed that the ganache pulled away from the cake. I just figured it was because it got too cold. Had I warmed up the cake, maybe the ganache would have integrated better. don’t know. I didn’t think to mention it, though I’m glad you did. Anyway, your pictures are wonderful, and I enjoyed reading your post.

  4. My ganache didn’t pull away from the cake. But I messed mine up because the corn syrup unsweetened chocolate hardened and I had to add a bit more corn syrup to it. I wonder if that’s why mine was different. Your cake looks pretty. I’m sorry to hear you’re not a fan of it.

  5. i have had ganache peel off cakes before, which annoys me, but this ganache was for me an exception. i have come to blame the quality of the chocolate i’ve used. scharffenberger was the worst for peeling ganache and dry cakes, at least for me!

  6. Χ‘”Χ”

    I simply ignored the 4 hour ganache bit and put it right on the cake. I had no peeling from any uppity ganache.

  7. Interesting.. again your batter is so thick just like Kim. Mine is more like liquid batter.
    Sorry to hear that you didn’t like the cake.

  8. Hmmm.. no peeling ganache for me. But, my cake was crumbly (not dry), but I did not like the texture at all. I tend to gravitate to those dense, almost brownie type cake or the opposite light and airy (Genoise anyone?).

    Ganache totally hit run.. cake not so much.

    I have high hopes for next week’s choice.

  9. I’m not a big fan of white chocolate either, and I think it’s a waste of money to put it in a chocolate cake. I like so many other chocolate cake recipes of Rose’s better than this one, and they don’t have any white chocolate in them. Oh well. I think next week’s recipe will be much better. Hope you’re loving your Sous Chef – it’s the bomb. And if you’re ever in the market for the best, most quiet ice cream maker ever, the Breville Smart Scoop is equally excellent.

  10. High five, new Breville Sous Chef buddy! I’m glad you asked about food processors in the Facebook group, because mine had recently bit the dust as well, and I hadn’t managed to find the time to look up any reviews on what to replace it with. Really appreciate the feedback you got from a trusted group of peers! πŸ™‚

    • Glori

      I haven’t used it yet, Kristina but Patricia really likes the Breville. Most of the reviews I read rated it really high and the sales person at Williams-Sonoma liked it over the Cuisinarts.

  11. I felt the same way as you about this cake – dry/crumbly cake and uncooperative ganache. Mine also set up very fast and was a disappointment as I had some fun decorating ideas that didn’t work out. Oh well. I wonder why some people got smooth and creamy ganache and others got hard ganche.

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