Tuesday, April 26, 2011

William Sonoma Recipe: Easter Nest Torte

My mother-in-law threw a massive Easter lunch this year and we were in charge of bringing something chocolate.  Mike and I took the opportunity to try out William Sonoma's Easter Nest Torte - and ooh we're glad we did!  It really wasn't that hard to make - just a little time consuming  - and delicious!  

1/2 c self-rising flour (to make your own: add 1.5 tsp baking powder and 1/2 tsp salt per 1 c. flour)
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/3c cocoa powder
1 stick (1/2c) unsalted butter, softened
1/2 c superfine sugar (you can throw normal sugar in the food processor for a couple pulses, or just use normal sugar - that's what we did and the texture was still great)
2 eggs
4 Tbsp orange flavored liqueur
3 oz semi-sweet chocolate, broken into pieces

Grease a 9in springform pan and line the base.  Sift flour, baking powder, and cocoa.  Add butter, sugar, and eggs.  Whisk until creamy.  Turn into the prepared pan, level, and bake at 350 for 20-25min.  (Mine only took 12 min on convection. Watch closely.)  Remove from pan and place on a cooling rack.  Move the cake to a serving plate and drizzle with the liqueur.  (We used a toothpick to prick holes all over for better absorption.)

Measure the cake's circumference, then cut a waxed paper strip 1/2in longer and 2.5in wide.  Melt the chocolate and spoon it along the strip, spreading it to the edge on one side and shaping a wavy line on the other about 1/2in away from the edge.  Leave 1/2 in free at one end.  Set aside for 15-20min, then carefully lift the paper strip and secure it around the sponge so the straight edge rests on the plate and the ends of the strip meet. Chill.  (We found it took longer then they said to get to a pliable state that was still hardened enough to stand upright.)

2 tsp powdered gelatin
2 Tbsp cold water
3 egg yolks
1/4 c superfine sugar
1 tsp conrstarch
1 1/4 c milk
7oz semi-sweet chocolate
1 1/4 c whipping cream

Sprinkle the gelatin over the water in a small bowl and set aside to soften.  Beat the egg yolks in a bowl with the sugar, cornstarch, and a little of the milk.  Put the remaining milk in a heavy bottomed saucepan and bring just to a boil.  Pour it over the egg yolk mixture, whisking well.  Return the mixture to the saucepan and cook gently, stirring until thickened.  Do not allow to boil.

Remove from heat and stir in the gelatin until dissolved.  Break the semi-sweet chocolate into pieces and add to the gelatin mixture.  Leave to melt then stir until smooth.  Cover with waxed paper and allow to cool until just beginning to thicken then remove paper.

Whip the cream into soft peaks and fold it slowly into the chocolate mixture.
Turn into the chocolate mould on the sponge and level.  Chill.  Remove the waxed paper strip from the outside of the cake.

5oz milk chocolate
small chocolate eggs

The recipe says to:
Use a sharp knife, slice the milk chocolate into long thin shards and lay on the cake in a nest.  We just went ahead and melted more semi-sweet chocolate, spread it on waxed paper and then broke it into pieces which we arranged on the cake.

Enjoy!  It's super rich, creamy, and not too sweet!  (Not to mention my husband is quite the chocolate pro!)
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