Sunday, 12 June 2011

Chocolate Toffee Caramel Crunch Cake with Peanut Butter Meringue Frosting

I got this recipe from Mississippi Kitchen. Previously on hold as I don't know where to get the toffee bits. Recently a friend of mine gave me the toffee recipe. The only different is the ingredient I chose for substitution. In the recipe she gave me, they usually use almond. Instead, I used peanuts.

By the way, some info on this recipe:

1. This recipe took top honors at the Hershey's Cocoa Classic at the Pennsylvania State Fair in 2008.

2. It was created by Kelly Madey.

I haven't been able to translate this recipe to BM yet. So I just share with you the original in English.

Chocolate Toffee Caramel Crunch Cake

Nonstick cooking spray for baking
2 cups sugar
2 cups cake flour
1/2 cup cocoa
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs
1 cup buttermilk (subs with 1 cup of milk + 1 teaspoon lemon juice/vinegar)
1/2 cup canola oil (subs with corn oil)
2 teaspoons vanilla
1/2 teaspoon espresso powder (subs with 1 teaspoon of coffee powder)
1 cup boiling water
1 8-ounce bag toffee bits (subs with 40 g crushed peanuts + 60 g castor sugar, caramelized)

Peanut Butter Meringue Frosting (recipe follows)

Caramel Sauce (recipe follows)

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line three 9-inch cake pans with parchment circles and spray with nonstick cooking spray. Set aside. (I just greased the cake pan).

2. In a large bowl, sift together the dry ingredients. Add the eggs, buttermilk, oil and vanilla to the dry ingredients. Beat mixture until combined and smooth (about 1 minute). Stir espresso powder into hot water. Add to batter and mix until just combined. Pour batter into pans and bake for approximately 17 to 20 minutes or until skewer comes out clean. Let cool for 10 minutes, then remove cakes to wire racks to finish cooling.

3. While cake is cooling, make frosting and caramel sauce.

4. To assemble cake: Place bottom cake layer on serving plate. Spread with 1 cup frosting. Sprinkle 1/4 cup toffee bits over top. Drizzle with caramel sauce. Place second layer on top. Spread with 1 cup frosting. Sprinkle 1/4 cup toffee bits over top. Drizzle with caramel sauce.5. Spread remaining frosting over cake. Place 3/4 cup toffee bits on top of frosted cake. Drizzle with remaining caramel sauce.

Peanut Butter Meringue Frosting

1 1/8 cups sugar (reduced it to 3/4 - 1 cup only)
1/4 cup water
1/2 cup pasteurized organic egg whites (see NOTE)
3 sticks unsalted butter at room temperature (3 sticks equal to 1 1/2 cup)
1 1/2 cups creamy peanut butter
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/2 cups confectioners' sugar

Place sugar and water into a saucepan. Stir to combine. Cook over medium heat until temperature reaches 240 degrees. During the last 5 minutes of cooking, whip egg whites in a stand mixer to stiff peaks. Slowly add hot sugar syrup and continue to beat for approximately 15 minutes or until mixture has cooled. Add butter, a tablespoon at a time, whipping after each addition. Add peanut butter and vanilla. Whip until fluffy. Add confectioners' sugar and whip until combined and creamy.

NOTE: Since the egg whites in the frosting aren't cooked, it's best to use pasteurized egg whites. Look for cartons of pasteurized liquid egg whites near the eggs in the supermarket.

Caramel Sauce (I omitted this step)

1/2 cup light brown sugar
1 tablespoon cream
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 teaspoon vanilla

Place all ingredients except vanilla into a small sauce pan. Heat to a boil, stirring. Cook for 2 more minutes. Remove mixture from heat. Carefully add in vanilla (mixture will sputter). Stir to combine. Let cool until thickened but still liquid enough to drizzle.

Some tips:

1. To make toffee : place 40 g crushed peanuts/almonds on non-stick pan without oil. Cook until golden brown. Set aside. Caramelize 60 g sugar. Pour on the nuts immediately as it will be harden the minute it cools.

2. The sugar syrup method in making the frosting is quite similar with the one in making macaron. I used the swiss meringue method. Double boiled the egg whites & some sugar from '1 1/8 cup'. Keep on stirring until the sugar dissolved and when you touch with your finger, it's a bit warm on the surface so that we know that the egg whites are cooked. Then follow the rest of the recipe.

3. I find this cake to be best served chilled.


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