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Little Switzerland Cake – Pecan, Mascarpone and White Chocolate

Little Switzerland Cake – Pecan, Mascarpone and White Chocolate

Quantity: 20 cm round cake pan
Time: 3 hours
Difficulty: advanced

For pecan and chocolate meringue:
50 grams pecans
10 grams sugar powder
10 grams cocoa powder
2 large egg whites
Pinch of salt
50 grams sugar

For mascarpone mousse:
2 grams gelatin powder
10 ml. water
2 large egg yolks
50 grams sugar
30 ml. milk
125 grams mascarpone cheese at room temperature
125 ml. heavy cream

For chocolate and pecans crunchy layer:
50 grams chocolate spread (I used Nutella)
15 grams dark chocolate
15 grams butter
25 grams finely chopped pecans

For white chocolate mousse:
3 grams gelatin powder
15 ml. water
120 ml. milk
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
Pinch of salt
1 large egg yolk
200 grams white chocolate
250 ml. heavy cream

Decoration:
A little whipped cream
Whole pecans
Crushed cocoa beans
White chocolate discs

Preparation:

  1. Pecan and chocolate meringue: preheat oven to 170c degrees and lightly grease the pan.
  2. In a food processor with a steel blade put pecans, powdered sugar and cocoa powder and blend until thin powder is made.
  3. In a bowl of a mixer whip egg whites and salt at high speed. When white foam begins to form, gradually add the sugar and continue to whip for 3-4 minutes until you get a very stable meringue.
  4. Add the pecan powder into the meringue and fold gently but firmly until smooth.
  5. Pour the meringue onto the pan and flatten evenly.
  6. Bake for 15-25 minutes or until set and golden. During cooling the meringue will shrink a bit and that’s fine.
  7. Chocolate and pecans crunchy layer: in a small bowl, melt chocolate spread, dark chocolate and butter until melted and smooth.
  8. Add chopped nuts and mix until incorporated.
  9. Pour the mixture on a baking tray lined with parchment paper and form a 15 cm circle.
  10. Cool in the freezer for at least an hour, or until it is completely frozen and set.
  11. Mascarpone mousse: in a small bowl mix gelatin and water and set aside for 10 minutes at room temperature.
  12. In a heat-proof bowl, whisk egg yolks, sugar and milk until smooth.
  13. Cook the egg mixture over double-boiler, while whisking constantly, until mixture is airy and somewhat brighter.
  14. Dissolve the gelatin in the microwave and add into the mixture. Strain and add in the cheese. Beat until blended.
  15. In a mixer bowl, whip cream to soft peaks.
  16. Fold the cream into cheese mixture gently until you get a smooth mousse.
  17. Pour the mousse over the meringue layer and flatten the top.
  18. Remove the crunch from the freezer, extract from the baking paper and place in the center of the mousse, pressing it slightly downwards.
  19. Freeze the cake until white chocolate mousse is ready.
  20. White chocolate mousse: in a small bowl mix gelatin and water and set aside for 10 minutes at room temperature.
  21. In a small pot heat milk, vanilla and salt to a simmer.
  22. In a separate bowl beat the egg yolks.
  23. Pour about 1/3 of hot milk onto the egg yolk, while whisking until blended.
  24. Return the mixture into the pan with the remaining milk and stir well.
  25. Cook the cream over medium-low heat, stirring with a spatula until the mixture reaches 82-84c degrees. Remove from heat.
  26. Dissolve the gelatin, add into the cream mix until incorporated and strain.
  27. Melt the white chocolate in the microwave and add into the cream. Whisk until smooth.
  28. Cool the mixture at room temperature for 10-15 minutes.
  29. Whip the cream to soft peaks and fold into the white chocolate cream.
  30. Pour the mousse over the crunchy layer and level the top using a palate knife.
  31. Freeze the cake for at least 5-6 hours, preferably overnight.
  32. Extract the cake from the pan.
  33. Decoration: transfer the whipped cream into a pastry bag fitted with Saint Honoré piping tip and drizzle over the cake.
  34. Arrange pecans and sprinkle crushed cocoa beans on top.
  35. Arrange chocolate discs on the sides of the cake in a fan.
  36. Thaw the cake for 3-4 hours in the refrigerator and serve.
עוגת שוויצריה הקטנה

Photo: Natalie Levin

Notes:

  • The cake can be made 5-6 days in advance and kept in the freezer, well wrapped, until serving. Add the decorations when serving.
  • Instead of pecans you can use any other type of nut you like.
  • After serving, keep the cake in a closed container in the refrigerator up to 4-5 days.
עוגת שוויצריה הקטנה

Photo: Natalie Levin

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