Thursday, July 25, 2013

Chocolate Cake with Mascarpone Ganache Filling

Chocolate Cake with Mascarpone Ganache Filling
This is one rich, delicious cake. The mascarpone ganache filling is rich, smooth and creamy, almost like a French silk, but a bit lighter. The outside frosting is a deep sweet chocolate flavor. The cake is moist with a tender crumb. Exactly what I was going for. 
I still have a bunch of extra mascarpone cheese in my refrigerator, due to my bad math for the wedding cupcakes I made a month ago. So, when my friends were going to pass through town and spend the night, it created the perfect opportunity to make a cake. At first I thought I'd make my favorite chocolate birthday cake, but all of the different layers would take too long. After looking up "chocolate cakes" and mascarpone ganache, I came up with this, and I LOVE it. My friends all loved it too, particularly Jen and Jeremy, who gave up carbs three months ago. I'm honored that they chose to break their diets at my house. Hopefully I have not permanently derailed their new lifestyle.

Chocolate Cake with Mascarpone Ganache Filling
     --(adapted from

Cake Ingredients:
  • 1 cup Ghirardelli Sweet Ground Chocolate and Cocoa (or use 1/2 cup ground cocoa powder and increase the total amount of sugar below to 1 1/4 cups)
  • 1 1/2 cups sifted cake flour
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons King Arthur Flour Cake Enhancer (optional)
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2/3 cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 2 large eggs @ room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 batch of Mascarpone Ganache (recipe below)
  • 1 batch of Empress Frosting (recipe below)
Cake Directions
Preheat oven to 350ºF.  Prepare two 8" x 1 1/2" round cake pans by spraying with non-stick cooking spray and then lining with parchment or wax paper circles.  Into a mixer bowl fitted with a whisk attachment, sift flour with ground chocolate, cake enhancer, sugar, baking soda, cream of tartar, and salt. Add butter and 3/4 cup buttermilk. Beat on low speed to combine ingredients. Scrape sides of bowl and then beat on low-medium speed for 2 minutes. Add 1/4 cup buttermilk, eggs, and 1 teaspoon vanilla. Beat additional 2 minutes.  Spread batter into prepared pans. Bake at 350ºF for 30 to 35 minutes. Cool on racks for 10 to 15 minutes; carefully remove from pans. 
While cake cools, make the ganache.
Cut cooled cakes in half horizontally so you have four equal layers of cake. Layer the cake with the mascarpone ganache, using 1/3 of the mascarpone ganache for each of the three layers of the filling. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate while you prepare the Empress Frosting (you can let it refrigerate overnight, if you wish).
Frost with the Empress Frosting and serve.
Refrigerate leftovers.
Makes one cake, about 12-16 servings

Mascarpone Ganache

  • 28 Dove Dark Chocolate Promises, unwrapped (or 8 oz. good quality chopped dark chocolate)
  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 8 oz. mascarpone cheese
Place unwrapped chocolate in a heat-proof bowl. Place cream in a small heavy bottomed saucepan over medium heat. Heat the cream until it comes to a simmer. Pour hot cream over the chocolate and let sit for about five minutes. After five minutes, stir chocolate and cream until chocolate is melted and mixture is smooth and uniform.
Allow ganache to cool to room temperature. Once it's cool, pour ganache into a large mixing bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment. Add mascarpone cheese and mix on low until ganache and mascarpone are mixed. Whip on high until stiff peaks form.

Empress Frosting

     --(adapted from

In 2-quart heavy saucepan, heat half and half with butter and sugar, stirring until blended. Add ground chocolate, mixing with wire whip until smooth. Heat on medium-low until mixture is thick and shiny and runs off the spoon like syrup and the first bubble appears on the surface (160°F). Do not boil or overcook frosting. Cool 5 minutes, add vanilla. Place pan of frosting in a bowl of ice and water (or snow in the winter). Beat slowly with spoon until frosting holds shape. Frost cake. Refrigerate to set frosting. Makes frosting for and 8-inch layer cake.

1 comment:

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