Sunday, 29 July 2012

Hairy Bikers Bakeation Challenge - Italy

Scanning through the Italy chapter, deciding what to cook, there were some really nice recipes, but what I really wanted to try was the Hairy Bikers Chocolate & Hazelnut Cake or Torta Gianduia.  It looked so naughty I was trying to decide how I could justify baking such a delectable delight.  Well imagine my glee when my running buddy and friend Anita announced it was her birthday today as we were tootling around on our Sunday morning run.  Hoorah, I had an excuse to get extravagant baking.  So sweaty clothing aside, off I dashed on the way home to get a jar of Nutella.

The recipe consists of ......... lots of sugar / butter / chocolate / eggs and hazelnuts!  Not a recipe for the faint-hearted :-)  But full of potential.

First off I melted a ridiculous amount of butter and chocolate and then allowed it to cool.

The egg yolks (I had large eggs in the fridge, so only used 5 eggs instead of the suggested 6) and castor sugar were creamed together until pale and then the chocolate mixture was blended with it, before adding 200g of the hazelnuts. Now I had a little trump card up my sleeve as I still had some of the ground hazelnuts left that I bought back from Germany.  Not readily available here, they make speedy work of the recipe.

The egg whites had to be whisked until they formed stiff peaks and when held over your head would not slop on top of it.  The following photos are my evidence that this was most certainly achieved.  Thank god it worked as I had just washed my hair!

The bowl starts to rise................please work.................................

Phwew - weeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee

I must add Chicken eggs are much quicker to whisk than duck eggs, but that must be due to the more glutinous whites in a duck egg - random thought!

Add some booze and then a couple of tablespoons of the egg whites to bind .......

Before gently folding in the rest of the egg whites ( gently so as not to lose their airiness) ..................

Pop it into a lined 23cm spring-form tin - I cheat and use a Lakeland cake liner.......

Before putting into a 180c static oven (or 160c fan oven) for 40 minutes...................

Once firm and nicely risen (??  - do not expect your knife or skewer to be totally dry as the cake continues to cook in the tin and should be moist when completely cooled) allow to cool in the tin for 30 mins, before taking out off the tin and cooling completely.

Then the fun begins......smearing it in Nutella and adorning with a little iced wording.....

I then skipped round (OK, I jumped in the car!!) to Anita's to deliver said birthday cake.  Oh boy it didn't disappoint!  Very moist, rich and with a nice hazelnut crunch running through it.  I think it would also work as a warm dessert, fresh out the oven (minus the nutella topping) with some double cream or creme fraiche.

Mental note - ask Sis to send some ground hazelnuts home with my Mum.  Subtle - nope!

My last Hairy Bikers Bakeation chapter challenge will be France (already done Spain!) ....... what possibilities. 

Now I just need to work off Italy's offering :)

1 comment:

  1. Fabulous! I'm so glad it worked for you, but damn that would've been a funny photo if it didn't!!! Scrummy looking cake :)