We have had a wonderful response to our competition over the past three weeks and there is still one week to go. As they say, maybe we have saved the best to last – well certainly the sweetest – because it is dessert week, and we have a lovely recipe at the end of this blog.
In order to be in with a chance of winning a signed copy of my new cookbook, ‘The Nation’s Faveourite Food Fast,’ all you have to do is TELL me what your favourite fast dessert is.
You can enter on the MacNean House and Restaurant Facebook page or on my own Twitter page. Good luck everyone and for a bit of inspiration here is a gorgeous Chocolate Cake with a twist from my new book.
Cappuccino Cream Chocolate Cake
This might look like a very impressive cake that took ages to make, but it’s really only an assembly job. Mascarpone is a rich, creamy cheese from Lodi in the Lombardy region of Italy. It has a sweetened taste and is famously used in classic tiramisu, which is the basis of this dessert.
However, I’ve used shop-bought chocolate loaf cakes instead of the traditional sponge fingers.
Using an electric whisk, mix the mascarpone cheese, icing sugar and vanilla seeds until well combined. Whip 375ml (13fl oz) of the cream until soft peaks form and then fold into the mascarpone mixture.
Pour the coffee into a shallow dish and stir in the Coole Swan. Slice the chocolate loaves. Line the base and sides of a 23cm (9in) springform cake tin with parchment paper and wrap the outside in clingfilm to avoid any leaks.
Dip 8 of the chocolate cake slices in the Coole Swan mixture to cover the bottom of the tin. It’s important to only dip them as you go along so that they are not soaking for long, which would make them difficult to handle.
Cover the layer of soaked chocolate cake with one-third of the mascarpone cream and then arrange another even layer of the soaked cake slices on top. Continue layering in this way, finishing with a mascarpone layer, and place in the fridge to chill for 10–15 minutes.
Meanwhile, whip the rest of the cream in a clean bowl and transfer to a piping bag fitted with a star-shaped nozzle. When ready to serve, carefully remove from the cake tin and transfer to a cake stand. Give the cake an even dusting of the cocoa powder, then pipe 10–12 peaks of cream around the edge of the cake and top each one with a chocolate-covered coffee bean. Place in the middle of the table so that everyone can help themselves.
750g (1¾lb) mascarpone cheese, well chilled
200g (7oz) icing sugar, sifted
1 vanilla pod, split in half and seeds scraped out
450ml (¾ pint) cream, well chilled
200ml (7fl oz) freshly brewed strong espresso coffee, left to cool
100ml (3½fl oz) Coole Swan Irish cream liqueur
2 x 380g (13oz) chocolate loaf cakes (shop-bought or homemade)
2 tsp good-quality cocoa powder
10–12 chocolate-covered coffee beans, to decorate