Updated: Jan 12
This post is all about cute Lavender colour, Earl Grey and Milk chocolate! Can you think of anything better?
I have been meaning to associate Milk Chocolate and Earl Grey for a while now, so quite happy that I finally got around to bake this long overdue flavour combination!
I must say that the trigger was receiving my new Lavender colour from the amazing Colour Mill range! I couldn't resist making a lavender colour cake, and Earl Grey tea being often associated with purple, it was the perfect match!
The Velvet looking finish
To get that beautiful coloured velvety sponge, I had to first make what we call in French "Pate à Cigarette" which literally means "Cigaret Dough"! It is simply a mix of four ingredients (egg whites, flour, icing sugar and butter) that will make this paste-consistency dough which you will be able to spread thinly on a silicone mat before pouring your sponge batter and baking it. Easy peasy and the result never ceases to amaze me! The beauty of it, of course, is that you can use any colour you want, and therefore give any sponge that cool velvety finish! Well... Not quite ANY sponge, they would still have to be baked on a tray.
The recipe now? Why, of course! Here it is:
Early Grey Milk Chocolate & Almond Cake.
Recipe for a 5" Cake - (You will need a 38x28cm tray with a silicone mat).
Pâte à Cigarette "Cigaret Dough"
30g butter (soft room temperature consistency)
30g Icing sugar
30g egg whites
30g Flour (or Corn Starch if you want to make it Gluten Free)
With the whish attachment whip the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the egg white and finish with the flour. It might look a bit split, add a bit of flour if it worries you. Add you desired colour.
With the help of an angled palette knife, spread directly onto your silicone mat. The layer should be quite thin - less than a millimetre (careful not to go too thin that it is transparent in places!). Place the silicone mat on your tray and freeze while you make your Sponge batter.
Plain Flour 100g
Ground Almonds 40g
Caster Sugar 120g
Melted Salted Butter 40g
Almond Flavour 5 drops
Melt the butter in a bowl (I use the microwaves)
Separate yolks and whites.
With the Whisk attachment on your kitchen mixer make a meringue with the whites and the caster sugar. When the meringue is thick and glossy, quickly add the yolks and the almonds flavour drops and give a couple more turns with the whisk.
Fold in by hand the Plain Flour and Ground Almonds. Use a silicone spatuta to fold it in gently until all mixed together. In the bowl with the melted butter, scoop some of that mixture (about a quarter) and mix well until completely combined. Pour the butter mixture back in the main bowl and gently fold it all together.
Pour the whole batter onto your frozen tray with the cigaret dough.
Bake at 180ºC for about 15 minutes (or until evenly golden everywhere) turning your tray halfway through for an even baking.
Slide your silicone mat onto a cooling tray (don't burn yourself!) when you remove it from the oven! Thin sponges like this tend to dry out if you leave them to cool down on the baking tray.
Whipped Earl Grey Milk Chocolate Ganache
75g 40% Milk Chocolate + 55g Whipping cream + 2 Earl Grey tea bags
130g Cold Whipping Cream
The day before:
Make a ganache. Gently heat the 55g of cream (you can add a bit for good measure as it will be soaked up by the tea bags) and add the Tea Bags - leave to infuse for at least 20 minutes. Remove the tea bags and weight the cream again to make sure you have the required 55g (add some if necessary) and quickly reheat.
Melt the milk chocolate and pour the cream in 3 times to make a ganache. Blend with a stick mixer to finish smoothing the ganache.
Pour the 130g of cold whipping cream onto your ganache and blend again. Protect with cling film in contact with the ganache and leave in the fridge overnight or for AT LEAST 3 hours.
ASSEMBLING THE CAKE
With a piping bag with a large nozzle, pipe the first layer of ganache, then place the second layer of sponge, repeat the ganache process, and close with the last layer of sponge, making sure that the coloured part is facing up! Freeze for at least two hours. . hickness everywhere, drizzle with some sugar syrup infused with an Earl Grey tea bag (not too warm as the syrup will go through too deep and stain your beautiful colour on the other side!)
Cut three discs of about 4" diameter out of the sponge (you might have to resize them a bit) and a 3" tall strip the length of your tray.
Roll the strip inside of a 5" pastry ring, coloured side towards what will be the outside once you remove the ring, and place the bottom disc in the center. This will block the strip against the pastry ring and make it secure, preventing any leak - you might have to recut your discs if needed for them to fit perfectly (they should all be the size).
Get your ganache ready: simply pour your cold and rested ganache into your kitchen mixer bowl and whip with the whisk attachment until reaching a beautiful mousse consistency.
With a piping bag with a large nozzle, pipe a first layer of ganache, then place the second disc of sponge the same way as before, repeat the ganache process, and close with the last disc of sponge, making sure that the coloured part is facing up! Place in the fridge for at least an hour.
I simply chose to pipe Chantilly cream on the out edge as shown in the photo but you can decide to decorate however you want.
Enjoy my friends! And if you try this technique, remember to tag me on Instagram @zazamarcelle, would LOVE to see your work and reshare it with my followers. How exciting!