After 40 days and 40 nights its time to wow all your friends and family with this Easter show-stopping Gateaux Recipe! Layers of chocolate fudge, crunchy meringue and a praline cream – it’s a winner.
– 3 medium eggs
– 280g brown sugar
– 1 tbsp vanilla extract
– 190g mayonnaise
– 240ml water
– 225g plain flour
– 70g cocoa powder
– 6g bread soda
– 1.5g baking powder
– 2g salt
– 100g caster sugar
– 50ml water
– 60g toasted hazelnuts
– 100ml egg white
– 100g caster sugar
– 100g icing sugar
– 10g cornflour
– 1 tsp vanilla essence
– 250ml whipped cream
– 100g dark chocolate
– 50ml single cream
– 10g butter
– 10g vermicelli noodles
– 50g dark chocolate
– Mini eggs to garnish
1. For the chocolate sponges, whisk the eggs, vanilla and sugar until thick and pale in colour.
2. Add the water and mayonnaise. Combine. Finally fold in the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, bread soda and salt.
3. Divide this between two lined greased and floured 8” tins and bake at 180C for 20-25 minutes.
4. Remove and set aside.
5. For the praline, simply bring the water and sugar to a golden brown caramel stage and pour onto a lined tray, sprinkle the toasted nuts on top when hot and allow to cool.
6. Once cooled, blitz in a robot coupé until you have a fine praline powder. Set aside.
7. For the meringue, whisk the room temperature egg whites in a clean dry bowl until double in size.
8. Gradually add the caster sugar and continue to mix on full speed until thick and glossy.
9. At this point, add the icing sugar cornflour and vanilla and mix until thick and shiny.
10. Spoon this onto a lined greased baking tray, keep it unformed in size to the chocolate sponges.
11. Sprinkle half the praline power over the top and bake at 110C for 1 hour. Remove and set aside.
12. The chocolate ganache, heat the cream and pour over the chopped chocolate, mix until everything is blended and finally add the butter.
13. For the egg nest simply melt the chocolate and pour over the vermicelli noodles and place in a soup bowl lined with cling film chill.
1. Place one chocolate sponge on the cake stand, top this with the pre-baked praline meringue.
2. Spoon the whipped cream on top along with the remaining praline powder. Top this with the other chocolate sponge.
3. Spoon the ganache over the top and when still soft, top with the birds nest and add a few mini eggs for decoration!
– The noodles will give a very realistic birds nest appearance but they may be a little hard to eat so treat this part of the cake as a garnish
Shane Smith hails from Co Cavan and has been cooking his way around Ireland and further afield for the past 16 years, starting his training in Co. Donegal in Tourism College Killybegs and then extending his studies to Galway Mayo Institute of Technology graduating with a degree in Culinary Arts, specialising in Pastry.
Shane has been very fortunate to have worked in and ran the pastry sections in some of Ireland’s leading 5* hotels and restaurants. Shane can be spotted all over the country carrying out his fun, interactive demonstrations with some of Ireland’s leading chefs. In September 2015, Shane was honoured to be awarded the title of “Best Bakery Manager in Ireland” in conjunction with Shelflife magazine and most recently has landed a cookery slot on Sunday AM where he can been seen regularly bringing his natural flare and love for all things sweet from the TV3 studios into the nation’s homes.