Wednesday, December 12, 2012
Almond Joy Cake
Happy Birthday to my 10 year old daughter! At our home, the birthday traditions include choosing your own birthday cake/dessert and the menu for dinner. Nicole has been wanting a cake like an Almond Joy candy bar. Coconut, almonds, chocolate. I've never tried a cake like that but, a few weeks ago we bought a quart jar of Coconut Creme Spread from Costco. (I was going to post a link to it, but it isn't listed on the Trailblazer Foods/Wall Berry Farm website). It is a deliciously creamy spread with real coconut. Not too sweet or thick. I figured I could do a chocolate cake, split the layers, spread with coconut creme spread and some sort of chocolate for frosting. I decided on ganache for the chocolate part.
I can't give you a "recipe" for the whole thing, but directions if you're interested in trying something similar.
Almond Joy Cake
Mix 1 box of devils food cake mix (brand of your choice - I used Betty Crocker because it was on sale AND it has boxtops for education) according to directions. Pour into 2 8 or 9 inch round pans that are well greased or sprayed with Bak-Klene cooking spray. Bake as directed on the box. Turn out on cookie sheet and let cool.
While that cools, make your ganache. Bring 1 C. of heavy cream to just below a boil, pour over 2 C. milk or semi-sweet chocolate chips in a large bowl (I used a mixture of both). Stir with a wisk until the chips are melted and cream is blended in. Let cool on the counter, stirring occasionally.
Using a cake slicer or long, serrated knife, cut each cake layer in half horizonally. Set the first layer on your cake plate (I put my first layer top side down... then the cut sides will layer together, and then the second cake will go top side up - so the bottoms of the cake layers go together in the middle. Clear as mud?) Spread 1/3-1/2 C. of coconut creme spread on that, sprinkle with sliced almonds and set the other half of it on top. Spread a thin layer of your prepared ganache over the top (or bottom as is were) of that layer. Set the next cake layer on, spread another 1/3 - 1/2 C. coconut creme spread, sprinkle with sliced almonds, and set the last cake layer on top. (top side up) Pour ganache 1/2 C. at a time on to the middle of the stacked cake, letting it puddle out towards the edges before adding another 1/2 C. Pour enough on that it starts to run down the sides of the cake. Top with sliced almonds. Chill until ganache is set.
IF I could not find the Coconut Creme Spread, I would substitute a mixture of coconut pudding thinned with a little milk and mix in a good sized handful of shredded coconut.
Next time I use the ganache I'll let it cool just a tad more. I'd like it to ooze down the sides in a bit thicker of a stream and not puddle at the bottom so much. Not bad for a first attempt though, if I do say so myself! And I do.
We'll be eating this with ice cream. Nicole's choice of dinner is: Shrimp coctail, Cheesy bacon chicken, FANcy Potatoes, fresh fruit platter, and dessert. Several of my 10 year olds in the past have chosen things like hot dogs or chicken nuggets. Not Nicole!