I don’t know what’s it about the cakes and bread in HongKong, they are simply amazing. They are light, airy, not too sweet, perfect texture, everything is so well balanced, the cream is better …. I mean I could polish off an entire cake by myself. I’d say the ingredients make all the difference. The flour, butter, sugar and ofcourse the water, the Chef’s talent and the weather. Thats pretty much everything right? From my experience of living and cooking in different countries, I can guarantee its not the same everywhere. There are hundreds of times I’ve followed the recipe to the T , but I’d still end up with a totally different product.
Last week I was in HongKong with my family for a little holiday. We did the whole tourist bit, with taking my son son to Disneyland and the beach, parks etc. Travelling with kids and feeding them on time on holidays does get a bit tricky. It’s at one such time that we ended up ordering the Chocolate Marquise cake at Starbucks for my son. And was that cake good. He loved it so much, he practically had the cake everyday ! I know what you’re thinking what a horrible mom, a cake everyday ! But hey he was on a holiday and trust me a full stomach is better than a empty one for a fussy kid. That said, I’ll tell you why that cake was hard to resist. Two layers of soft chocolate sponge sandwiched with two equally gorgeous layers of chocolate mousse – the best kind. Dusted with cocoa, I bet no one can resist it. I never thought I’d find such a goodie at Starbucks.
Back at home, I can’t stop thinking of that slice of heaven, and like a true foodie I had to try make it. Truth be told, its not the same, well it can’t be, but it is a pretty good one if it isn’t being compared. Chocolate Marquise is a decadent dessert cake, made with a light moist sponge and rich chocolaty mousse.
For the sponge
- 3 eggs
- 140 gms caster sugar
- 75 gms plain flour
- 2 tbsp Dutch Cocoa powder
- 30 gms melted and cooled butter
Mousse ( Marquise)
- 300 gms of dark chocolate
- 175 gms unsalted butter
- 100 ml double cream
- 5 eggs, separated
- 100 gms caster sugar (optional – don’t use if you don’t like it too sweet )
For the chocolate sponge
Preheat oven to 200°C. I made 2 small cakes using 6 ” loose bottom tins. Line the bottom with baking paper .Whisk eggs and caster sugar with an electric mixer for about 8-10 minutes or until the mixture is pale and tripled in volume. Sift over flour and cocoa powder and fold through gently. Fold through the melted butter until all combined. Pour equally into the two tins. Bake for about 15- 20 mins or still skewer comes out clean. The cake would have formed a tiny dome, but don’t worry. Remove and cool before you start slicing the dome off. Then halve the cake and keep the layers to cool completely.
For the Marquise
Melt butter and chocolate over very low heat in a heavy based saucepan or double boiler. Mix to combine and set aside.Whisk egg yolks and sugar for 4-5 minutes with an electric mixer until pale and frothy. Stir through melted chocolate and butter until combined and set aside.Whisk egg whites and a pinch of salt until firm peaks. Gently fold through the chocolate mixture. And lastly beat the cream still it hold shape and fold gently into the mixture. The mousse is ready to set.
Use the same tins you used to bake the cake, clean them well. Place the bottom layer of the sponge in both tins and pour half the mousse equally in both. Now place the second layer of the sponge giving it a little push to make sure it sits well on top. Put them in the freezer for about 30 mins and pour the rest of the mousse on top. cover and keep both the tins in the fridge overnight. This is necessary and the mouses and sponge needs to set well. When ready to serve, run a knife around the sides of the tin and push from below so the loose bottom comes up and the cake is out. Dust with cocoa powder and its ready to be eaten.