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Dark Chocolate Crêpe Cake

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My first introduction to something resembling this layered delight was the Jodetert. It was only later, on my first visit to Paris, that I discovered the crêpe cake. I ordered it in a café near Montmartre with a cup of espresso and remember thinking there was nothing that could make this moment more perfect. I’ve been trying to recreate that crêpe cake ever since, and after many years of refinement, I think I’ve finally got the recipe as perfect as it can be. The secret, of course, is a great quality dark chocolate.

Dark Chocolate Crêpe Cake

Cooking time: 45 minutes | Chill time: 3 hours | Assembly: 30 minutes | Serves: 6

INGREDIENTS

for the pancakes

4 eggs, large

800 ml milk

95 ml (80 g) granulated sugar

720 ml (305 g) cake flour

2,5 ml salt

25 g salted butter (melted)

2 oranges (zested)

for the chocolate cream

625 ml cream

225 ml (120 g) icing sugar

140 ml (60 g) cocoa powder

2 gelatin sheets

for the chocolate ganache

300 g Forage and Feast 70% dark chocolate

200 ml cream

50 ml orange juice

garnish

100 g Forage and Feast dark chocolate with hazelnut

METHOD

for the pancakes

To make the crêpes, start by whisking together all the ingredients in a medium bowl until you achieve a smooth and lump-free batter. Cover the bowl and refrigerate the batter for 1 hour.

Place a crêpe pan on the stove and pre-heat over a medium heat, pour a ladle of the batter into the pan and tilt it to cover the entire surface of the pan, the crêpe should be very thin. Allow the crêpe to cook and gently flip it once the edges start to pull away from the pan. Cook each crêpe until golden and set them aside until needed. Repeat the previous steps until you use all the batter.

for the chocolate cream

Place the gelatin sheets in ice water and allow them to soften. Remove the sheets from the water and drain the excess water. Lightly squeeze the sheets to ensure the water is removed. Melt the gelatin in 25 ml of the cream over a low heat, ensuring the cream doesn’t boil.

Place the cream and gelatin in the bowl of a stand mixer. Using the whisk attachment, whip the cream until stiff. Gently sift the icing sugar and cocoa powder over the whipped cream. Using a spatula, gently fold in until completely combined. Place the cream in the fridge to set for 2 hours.

for the chocolate ganache

To make the ganache, start by finely chopping the chocolate and placing it in a medium bowl. Place the orange juice and cream in a small pot and bring to a boil. Pour the cream over the chocolate while whisking using a balloon whisk until the chocolate is whisked in and there are no lumps. Place in a container in the fridge for 1 hour or until needed.

To assemble

To assemble the cake, start by placing a crêpe in the centre of the desired serving plate. Spread a smooth, thin layer of chocolate cream over the surface of the crêpe. Cover with another crêpe and repeat until the stack is completed. Place the cake in the freezer for 15 minutes to firm up.

Remove the cake from the freezer and completely cover it in ganache. Smooth out surfaces and place back in the freezer for 10 minutes. Use a vegetable peeler to make hazelnut chocolate shavings to garnish the cake. Refrigerate the cake until ready to be served.

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