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  Hazelnut Truffle Torte

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Can't find hazelnuts?
Try toasted, sliced almonds instead. Toast them for 5-7 minutes in a 350 degree oven until lightly brown, cool and use in place of the hazelnuts.

Special equipment
needed for this cake:

4, 6-inch springform pans


Rich, dense, and decadent chocolate filled with creamy dark chocolate truffle, layered with white chocolate ganache and topped with toasted nuts and grated dark chocolate.

Chocolate Truffle Filling
3 oz dark chocolate
1/3 cup heavy cream
1 tbs Frangelico

Heat cream to boiling point and pour over chopped chocolate. Allow to rest for a minute and then stir to incorporate and melt chocolate.  Stir in Frangelico and pour mixture into a small, 6-inch wide plastic container and place in freezer for at least 1 hour.

Chocolate Cake
1 cup flour
¾ cup cocoa (the best you can find)
2 tsp baking powder
½ tsp baking soda
Pinch salt
1 ¾ cup plain yogurt
1 egg
1 stick butter, melted and cooled
¾ cup granulated sugar

Prepare pans first by buttering 4, 6-inch springform pans. Line bottoms with a piece of butter parchment paper. Sift together the dry ingredients and set aside. Stir together yogurt through sugar until well blended and the dry ingredients.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees and fill prepared pans 1/3 full with cake batter. Remove the truffle mixture from the freezer and score into four pieces and place one piece into each pan. Finish filling the pans covering the truffle mixture with the remaining batter.  Place pans on a cookie sheet and bake for 25-30 minutes until cakes are set and a tester placed in the cake only comes out clean. Cool completely in pan and then remove rings and place on rack.

White Chocolate Filling
4 oz white chocolate
1 tbs vegetable shortening
¼ cup powdered sugar
1 tbs Frangelico

Melt white chocolate and stir in shortening until mixture is glossy and incorporated. Add powdered sugar and blend well. Add Frangelico (hazelnut liqueur) and chill for a few minutes in the refrigerator until spreadable.

Chocolate Coating
12 oz of bittersweet or semi-sweet chocolate
2 tbs vegetable shortening
1 tbs heavy cream and 1 tbs of Frangelico - warmed
(very important to be warm so chocolate does not ‘seize’)

Melt chocolate, add shortening and stir until all is smooth. Slowly add the warmed cream and liqueur mixture. Allow to cool at room temperature until thick enough to spread/glaze the cakes.

For assembly
Grated dark chocolate for top
3-4 oz hazelnuts, toasted, skins removed, chopped

To assemble the cake:
Remove the bottom of the cake pans from the cake and the parchment paper.  Place 1 cake with top up on a turntable lined with wax paper.  Take ½ of the white chocolate filling and spread over cake making a level layer. Top with a second cake, top side down (so bottom of cake is facing up).  Spread a thick layer of the chocolate coating over the top and allow to flow over sides. Then smooth coating over the sides adding more to the top and smoothing until all is covered well. Scoop and press hazelnuts into the sides of the cake.  Then sprinkle top with the grated chocolate. Place in freezer for a few minutes to quickly set the cake.

Yields 2, 6-inch double layer cakes
- each serving 4 people.

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