If there’s something my husband really loves, that’s chocolate cake. I don’t bake it often, but I did promise him one for his belated 30th birthday celebrations, ready to welcome him upon his return from a working trip abroad.
The night he came back, we feasted on Prosecco, cheese, carpaccio and salad. Then, we chatted the night away between a bit of gorgonzola and a sip of Nebbiolo. Then, the lights went off, and only two candles lightened the room. He finally got his chocolate cake.
Chocolate Pistachio Cake
For the cake (makes two 8-inch layers):
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 cups white sugar
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1 cup milk
2 tsp white vinegar
1 cup hot water
1/2 cup vegetable oil (I used seed oil)
Preheat the oven to 180C/350° F. Whisk flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, salt and sugar in a large bowl. Add in oil, eggs, milk, vinegar, water and vanilla. Whisk until all the ingredients are well combined and the batter is smooth. Pour the batter into two 8-inch spring pans, greased. Bake for 35 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Let cool on a rack.
For the pistachio filling:
8 oz pure pistachio cream
Warm up the cream in a bain-marie until easy to spread. Cut the top of both cakes, spread the cream in one layer on one half and top with the other half of the cake. Transfer onto a rack suitable for icing.
For the chocolate ganache icing:
1 cup finely chopped dark chocolate (70%)
1 cup fresh cream (35% fat)
1 knot (10 gr) butter
1 tsp maple syrup
Bring cream to the boil over a low heat. Remove from the heat and add the chocolate pieces, butter and syrup. Whisk until creamy and smooth. Pour ganache on top of the cake and distribute the cream evenly with a spatula, making sure all sides are covered. Set cake in the refrigerator for two hours, until the icing is solid and cold.