A special extra post for my birthday!
It was my birthday this past weekend (shout out to December babies!) and I couldn’t decide what type of cake to make for myself. I’ve been thinking about this Crème de Cacao Torte for a while, which I made for Mom’s birthday years ago, and I remember it being delicious. I also remember that I only got to eat one slice since the day after her birthday I went camping and when I returned, the cake was gone. So, maybe it’s because I only had one slice that I wanted to see if the cake was as amazing as I remember. It didn’t disappoint!
It has a moist, fairly light chocolate sponge, but the boozy whipped cream filling and heavy ganache make it a calorie beast. It’s reminiscent of a black forest gateau or even a yule log, so it’s definitely suited for the holiday season if you add seasonally-appropriate decorations. The recipe comes from the Hershey’s Chocolate Cookbook that my friend got for me from the Ontario factory ages ago.
Make the day before serving as it needs to chill for 8 hours.
2/3 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 2/3 cups sugar
1/2 tsp. vanilla
2 cups flour
2/3 cup cocoa powder
1 1/4 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. baking powder
1 1/3 cup milk
2 tbsp. crème de cacao liqueur
3 cups whipping cream
6 tbsp. crème de cacao liqueur
3 tbsp. cocoa powder
*I tripled this filling because I discovered that the torte would be very flat with the original quantities and you wouldn’t have been able to see the cream filling.
Chocolate Ganache Glaze Ingredients:
8 oz. dark or bittersweet chocolate pieces (I used bakers chocolate)
1/4 cup whipping cream
1 tbsp. butter
2 tsp. crème de cacao liqueur
I made chocolate shapes with melted chocolate and froze them on baking sheets. I tried to make chocolate leaves but the only leaves that weren’t covered in snow were holly bush leaves; these didn’t work FYI!
Preheat the oven to 350F.
Cream the butter, sugar, eggs, and vanilla in a large mixing bowl until light and fluffy. Combine flour, cocoa, baking soda, and baking powder in a second bowl. Add the dry ingredients to the creamed mixture, alternating with the milk, blending until just combined.
Pour into two greased and floured 9-inch cake tins (next time I will also line the bottom with parchment paper). Bake for 30-35 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool ten minutes and then remove from pans. Sprinkle each layer with 1 tbsp. of crème de cacao liqueur; cool completely.
Meanwhile, prepare the filling. Beat whipping cream, crème de cacao, and cocoa until stiff. Cover and chill.
Once the cakes are cool, split each layer horizontally into 2 layers. I found that a long ham carving knife worked pretty well. Place one layer on the serving plate and spread with 1/3 of the filling (it was at this point I decided to to make another double batch of filling because 1/3 of the original yield was pathetic). Repeat layering with remaining cake and filling, ending with the top cake layer. I left my top layer with the dome, but you could level it. Let the cake chill.
Prepare the ganache glaze by combining chocolate pieces, whipping cream, and butter in a double boiler. Cook slowly on low heat, stirring constantly until mixture is melted and smooth. Stir in the crème de cacao. Cool to lukewarm and then drizzle over chilled cake. Chill several hours, preferably overnight.
Decorate as desired. I just popped some chocolate drizzle bark and stars on the top!