I might be the host of Spring Baking Championship but a baker I am not. But that doesn’t mean I can’t test the waters. When Studio 512’s host Stephanie Gilbert challenged me to a baking challenge . . . I knew I had to step up.
With some guidance from Spring Baking Champion Nacho Aguirre, I came up with this: a mini chocolate cake with chocolate ganache and macerated raspberries or “Ali’s wedding proposal cake” for short. It’s in honor of the upcoming wedding themed episode of Spring Baking Championship and while beautiful, decadent and rich . . . it is also very easy to make.
This is how you do it.
Out the gate I wanted to get the raspberries done as they could afford to sit for a bit. This is literally as simple as making cereal. Take a cup of raspberries, rinse them off and place in a bowl. Toss in a tablespoon of sugar and shake it off like Taylor Swift. I’m sorry I went there but I have a kid and she doesn’t curse in her music. Let that sit while you work on the rest.
Start the cake process by mixing all the dry ingredients until well incorporated. Nacho suggested I sift the flour to make sure there would be no lumps in the cake. I went ahead and did that with the flour and the sugar and cocoa powder. It’s a step but I’d well advise you take it. Texture is very important to cake along with flavor.
Then whisk in all the wet ingredients: the milk, vegetable oil and egg. I used a hand whisk first to get everything mixed to an even consistency. Then I reached for the electric mixer. I set the speed to medium(4 out of 7) and let it rip for 2 minutes.
Since I was doing this for a TV segment, I made two cakes but you should have enough for 8 cakes that fit in these 3″ ramekins. A couple things to note: make sure you grease and flour your ramekins. When the butter is room temp it’s a lot easier to work with. Also fill the cake batter about 3/4 of the way up because the cake will rise.
Stick them in a preheated 350 degree oven and start checking after 20 minutes.
These were done in about 22 minutes. I did the toothpick test and when the pick comes out clean . . they are done. Do yourself a favor and let these cool before you take them out of the ramekin. I got overzealous with my second batch and while the cake slid out easy . . . it broke apart when it hit the wire rack as the ramekin was a bit too hot to handle. Lesson learned: take your time.
Plated and ready to go. In case you’re wondering . . . the ganache, yeah I didn’t get the best process shots there because the process is pretty minimal. Place the dark chocolate chips in a bowl. Bring the heavy cream just . . . and I mean just to the point of a boil. Like when the bubbles just start to pop on the sides, pour onto the chocolate chips. Let that sit for about 2 minutes and then stir.
Nacho recommended I stir in an “S” shape pattern, starting from the center. I started out with that method. After while though, I just mixed it till it was well incorporated.
And there she is. If you watched me Studio 512 you will see I opted out of showing you my piping skills. The sad truth is my handwriting and overall artist skills are just as suspect. Still this dessert is a looker and is as simple to make as it is elegant and indulgent to eat.
And if you use this for your wedding proposal . . . tag me in the post!