Gothic Chocolate Cake with Nutella and Candy Glass

Our office recently had a potluck event to celebrate Oktoberfest and I was charged with making a German dessert. Last year I did some basic black forest cupcakes, but this year I went a little left-field and decided to do an “artistic interpretation” of a German gothic castle…I guess I must have had a boring week ūüėČ

I decided to do a small 3-tiered dark chocolate cake filled with layers of Nutella and Nutella mousse and frosted with a dark fudge icing. I made dark chocolate leaves for the “spires”¬†and candy glass for the rest of the “castle.”

Alas, this was to be the cake that never was. I took a few quick pics (thank goodness) before an unfortunate accident caused the cake to go smashing on the floor. My potluck got a very nice store-bought cake instead.

However, I thought I’d still share the photos for those¬†looking for different kinds of decorations, as well as the recipes for the¬†heavenly Nutella mousse and¬†the decorative candy glass.

Equipment:

For the candy glass:

For the mousse:

  • Electric beaters

Ingredients:

For the candy glass:

  • 3 1/2 cups white sugar
  • 1/4 tsp. cream of tartar (this is critical and prevents the sugar from crystallizing)
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 cup light corn syrup (also known as white corn syrup)

For the Nutella mousse: (warning: this mousse is highly addictive and may cause you to eat large quantities sans cake)

  • 8 oz. (or one container) Mascarpone cheese, rm. temp.
  • 3/4 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract (or you could use Frangelico–a hazelnut liqueur–which is what I did!)
  • 1 1/4 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1 cup Nutella

For the candy glass:

Prepare your large rimmed baking sheet by lining the sheet with tin foil and then spraying with Pam or a similar product.

Pour all ingredients into a large pot and stir together. Hook the candy thermometer to the edge of the pot. Heat over low to medium heat (no higher, as you do not want your sugar to burn too quickly)¬†until thermometer reads 290-300 degrees (hard crack point). (*Note: reaching this temp. will take a while–about¬†1/2 an¬†hour to¬†1 hour, depending on your heat.) By this point, your sugar mix will be a dark amber/brown color.

Immediately pour the hot sugar into the prepared pan (be careful doing this! The mix is extremely hot and can burn you easily. Make sure to wear potholder gloves, etc.). Make sure the pan is level and all parts of the pan are covered with the mix. Let stand about an hour. (*Note: if you see bubbles at the top, don’t worry, most will disappear as it cools. However, you can go through and pop any unseemly stragglers with a pin or sharp knife tip¬†if you want).

After the sugar glass is completely cool and hard, remove from the sheet and peel off the foil. To get the shards seen in these photos, I lined my bathtub with waxed paper and then shattered the glass by dropping it in the tub. You can, however, use something else to shatter it, like a hammer. But be warned: the word “glass” is not just a cute descriptor for this–it is like glass, and if you don’t handle the pieces with care you could get cut.

For the Nutella mousse:

Whip together the cheese, sugar, vanilla/Frangelico, and heavy whipping cream in a metal bowl with beaters until stiff peaks form. Add the Nutella and beat until well blended. Chill in the fridge for about 15 min. to 1/2 an hour. TA DA! Easy peasy. * However, this mousse will get super runny if not constantly refrigerated. Keep cake with mousse in the fridge until ready to serve!

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One thought on “Gothic Chocolate Cake with Nutella and Candy Glass

  1. Pingback: Ocean Cake, Flower Cupcakes, and a little Southern Hospitality | Baking Things

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