How to make a fast chocolate cake part 2
Tuesday 23rd September 2011, Recipe 20110923
How to make a fast chocolate cake part 2 – an introduction
I hope you would have read my spin on Hervé This’s Chocolate Mousse and how I had converted it into a fast chocolate cake. In this article I would like to describe some of the problems in making the fast chocolate cake.
Let me make a correction, the fast chocolate cake recipe in the previous article should mention 75g of cocoa powder.
Before I do that I would like to show you how good the Hervé This’s Chocolate Mousse is.
This chocolate mousse was made on Thursday 13th September 2011 and kept in the refrigerator. I had been nibbling off bits of if it every so often. Then, more than two weeks later, I took it out of the refrigerator and left if for three to four hours outside at room temperature. In Malaysia, room temperature is about 28C (82F) to 30C (86F) and it did not melt. This is a wonderful chocolate to make as it is quite solid and did not melt.
Problems associated with making fast chocolate cake
There are several difficulties associated with making fast chocolate cake and they are as follows:-
1. Don’t let the sugar solution come to boil or foam when making the chocolate mousse.
You can see the sugar butter solution coming to boil. Don’t let the sugar solution boil or foam too much as this will cause large air bubbles in the chocolate mousse and which can expand quickly and distort the shape of the chocolate cake. Best to bring up the temperature slowly and switch off the flame once it just begins to foam. Keep stirring to prevent it from foaming.
Keep the temperature below 60C (140F) as I believe that most cocoa butter or cocoa butter substitutes will melt by 55C (131F). In one of the experiment I tested the temperature and found out that the sugar solution was foaming at 70C (158F) or higher.
2. Don’t whisk the eggs too much.
I really beat the eggs into the chocolate mousse gel and you can see that there is too many large air bubbles trapped in the chocolate mousse. I had whisked it for more than a minute. I think about 5 to 10 seconds of whisking with a stick blender is sufficient.
When baking the chocolate cake these air bubbles trapped within the chocolate cake will expand out and distort the cake shape. Can you see the large air pockets and bubbles formed on the top of the chocolate cake?
3. Too much water or insufficient cocoa powder
If you add too much water into the mousse recipe or do not have sufficient cocoa powder when whisking water will ooze out of the mousse.
You can observe that when you drag the mousse aside you will find a lot of water separated from the cocoa mousse mixture. I had this when I used less cocoa powder than the recipe called for. Actually, it was an accident. I began to make the chocolate mousse when I realised my tin of cocoa powder was almost empty. As I didn’t want to stop everything and rush to the supermarket I carried on with 33g of cocoa powder instead of 75g and water began to ooze out of the chocolate mousse. I tried the recipe again with a different brand of cocoa powder and a much cheaper brand of butter and water did ooze out of the chocolate mousse as shown in the picture above.
4. Chocolate cake Bake time longer than 10 minutes
This is a very interesting problem. I found out that if I did not follow the first recipe on fast chocolate cake the bake time increased from 10 minutes to 25 minutes. This is related to the oozing of water too. I suspect that I had a case of ‘loose water’ and ‘bound water’. I don’t want to sound illiterate or mystical or mysterious but that was the general impression I was getting after a few recipes that took 20 to 25 minutes to bake. Actually the recipe in which I had 33g of cocoa (mentioned above which began to ooze) took 20 minutes to bake where as the original recipe took 10 minutes to bake. Hence I suspect that if the water content is not bound by sufficient emulsifiers and fat, ‘loose water’, it will take a longer time to bake. The recipes where the water did not ooze, ‘bound water’ took 10 minutes to bake. If I could do the same to bread than my bread recipes will bake quickly.
I will carry on more experiments on chocolate cake recipes with additional emulsifiers one of these days.
This article “How to make a fast chocolate cake part 2” was researched and written by Peter Achutha