Making this cake was a time for me to go back in time.
I was twenty-something years old, and it was the summer of 1990. It was my first trip to Europe and my first trip to Italy. I was going to finally meet my extended Italian family - Great aunts, uncles, cousins, my grandparent’s siblings both set of grandparents had over 10 brothers and sisters, so it was a very, long visiting trip.
It was an exciting time for my twenty-year old self.
It was also a bonus for me, because in 1990, Italy was the host of the World Cup (soccer) and with that the country was in full-on festivity mode. I witness and tried so many first during that summer.
My first gelato, first train ride, first visit to the Vatican. I swam in the beautiful beaches of the Mediterranean and played in the snow of the majestic mountains in Aosta Valley. The trip solidified my Italian heritage - I came back to the States with my body, my heart got left in Italy.
But the biggest high for me during the trip was when I was invited to see the famous Opera singers – Luciano Pavarotti, Placido Doming and Jose Carrerawhen they performed in Terme di Caracalla, Rome as part of the closing ceremony activities of the World Cup. I had heard Opera before, but I never quite gotten it, until my great-uncle sat me down and explain what Opera was all about. But once the first notes came out of Luciano Pavorotti’s voice in that magical setting, I was hooked. Opera had gained a huge fan in me.
Just as The Wicked Ganache gained a follower in me.
The chocolate cake was pretty straight forward to make. Made using white chocolate and combining it with unsweetened cocoa powder. The End results gives you a rich cake with amazing chocolate flavor, but at the same time not overly sweet. Just the way I like my chocolate cakes.
While the cake is a good cake, its not extraordinary like my favorite chocolate cake. For me it’s downfall was the texture, while it was not dry, the texture was not my usual preference when it comes to cake, which is soft, with a bit of a dense texture, which I was totally expecting, since Rose adds the butter to all the dry ingredients (flour, sugar, salt, baking powder) then after all that is mixed in, she adds the wet - a sure way to create a dense cake.
Unfortunately, this was not it.
But I can forgive the cake for this, because what really makes this cake is the Wicked Good Ganache, which is truly something. The secret ingredient is adding cayenne pepper to it - the recipe calls for ¼ to ¾ teaspoon and I started with a ¼ and tasted it, until I realized that I had gone the heavy handed route and used the full ¾! Totally. Worth. It. And just with that tiny bit of addition a perfectly good ganache became an out of this world ganache.
I made the full recipe, and since Case P is making sure we don’t put on extra weight with all of this baking bonazan, I made sure to pack it up and handed it over to Tom to take to work early Monday. Sending him off with hopes that this was not too out there for his co-workers.
At 10:40 I got the following text message “Your cake has had a lot of folks attacking it. All good responses and even 2nds.”
Then he followed the text with this picture:
An empy plate is always a good sign right?
Would I make it again? the cake maybe not, but the ganache is a winner and it will make plenty of encores in my kitchen.
Another bonus!, since this recipe has been posted in the internet and I can share it with you guys you can make sure to give it a try and then come back her and chip in with your take on it.
You can check out the rest of The Baking Bible Alpha Bakers doing their stuff by stopping at the bake along blog.
Disclaimer: As previously noted, no recipes are shared in my Cake Bible posts, due to publishing restrictions enforced by the publisher of Rose’s The Baking Bible. But, you can support me and her by purchasing the book.