Monday, 1 September 2014

Hazelnut Chocolate Gâteau (Wheat Free)

Yesterday was my sister's boyfriend's 19th birthday, so I made him a cake as usual. I asked my sister to find out what kind of cake he wanted, and he requested a cake that "tasted like Nutella". So, here's what I came up with: a chocolate hazelnut gateau!

 In my time I have tasted many a chocolate hazelnut spread and I can say, even though this may be blasphemous, some supermarket own-brand kinds are nicer than the famous Nutella, despite it being the most popular. If one were to make this cake with actual brand Nutella it would be rather expensive, as I used an entire 400 gramme (14 ounces) jar to make this cake.

This recipe uses a quantity of buttercream that uses a pound (450 grammes) of icing sugar, and as you can see from the pictures the layers and outer icing are quite thin. This is how I like it, but you could always increase the buttercream quantity by half to make the layers and the outer coating thicker.

For two 8 or 9  inch (20 or 23 centimeter) round sandwich cakes
  • 6½ ounces (185 grammes) spelt flour
  • 1½ ounces (40 grammes) cornflour
  • 2 ounces (55 grammes) cocoa powder
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 5 medium eggs, at room temperature
  • 2½ ounces (70 grammes) soft brown sugar
  • 5 ounces (140 grammes) caster sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla essence
  • 2½ ounces (70 grammes) sunflower oil
  • 2½ ounces (70 grammes) butter or block margarine
  • 5 to 7 tablespoons (75 to 105 millilitres) warm water
  • 3 ounces (85 grammes) chopped hazelnuts
For filling and crumb coat:
  • 4 ounces (85 grammes) room temperature butter or block margarine
  • 4 ounces (85 grammes) chocolate hazelnut spread
  • 1 pound (450 grammes) icing sugar, sieved
  • 2 tablespoons (30 millilitres) room temperature milk or water, or more if needed
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla essence
For assembly (optional):
  • Roughly chopped hazelnuts
  • Chocolate hazelnut spread

First, prepare the cakes:
  • Preheat your oven to 180°C (350°F, Gas Mk.4, or moderate).
  • Prepare the cake mixture as per the basic sponge recipe, and pour into two greased and floured 9 inch (23 centimeter) cake tins. Cook for 20 to 25 minutes until ready. Allow to cool completely in tins.
  • Once cold, cut each cake in half horizontally, and cut the domes off both cakes. Decide how you will assemble the layers, making sure the bottom layer of one cake, bottom side up, is on the top of the pile.
Then, fill and crumb coat the cake:
  • Cut a circle of card that's the same size as the bottom of the cake.
  • Make the chocolate buttercream icing following this recipe, beating the chocolate spread and butter together first.
  • Smear a little buttercream on the card circle and stick the bottom layer of cake to it.
  • Spread the cake with a thin scraping of chocolate hazelnut spread, and then spread just a little less than a quarter of buttercream. Use the same amount per layer
  • Spread the next layer with chocolate spread in the same way, and place on top. This means that each layer will be, cake -> chocolate spread -> buttercream -> chocolate spread -> cake. Repeat until you have run out of cake layers.
  • Coat the whole cake in a thin layer of buttercream to hold in the crumbs. Chill in the fridge for about an hour; you should have just under a third of the buttercream left.

Assemble the masterpiece:
  • Remove the cake from the fridge and coat with the remaining buttercream, leaving a nice back-and-forth rippled effect on the surface. Pile the roughly chopped hazelnuts on the top. Allow to set for about an hour before service.

And that's it! It's not very complicated, just a matter of spreading, but my Lordy was it delicious. We still have a little left in the fridge....

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