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Culinary S.O.S.

One Ganache Over the Line

April 10, 2002

DEAR SOS: Can you reprint the recipe for Royal Sonesta Chocolate Cake?

JUDITH HOLMAN

Newport Beach

*

DEAR JUDITH: This recipe, from the Royal Sonesta Hotel in Cambridge, Mass., was one of our 12 best recipes in 1985.

Royal Sonesta Double Chocolate Cake

Active Work Time: 40 minutes * Total Preparation Time: 1 hour, 10 minutes plus 30 minutes chilling

If using chocolate squares in the ganache, roughly chop them before adding to the cream.

CAKE

1/2 cup (1 stick) plus 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature, plus more for preparing pan

1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons flour, plus more for preparing pan

1 cup sugar

1/2 cup cocoa powder

1/2 cup water

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

3/4 teaspoon baking soda

4 eggs

Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Butter and flour a 9-inch round cake pan.

Beat together the butter and sugar until light and creamy, about 4 minutes. Stir the cocoa and water together in a bowl and add to the butter mixture. Beat 7 minutes, scraping down the sides of the bowl often. Add the flour, salt, baking powder and baking soda. Beat 2 minutes longer. Add the eggs. Mix until the batter is shiny and smooth, 5 minutes, scraping down the sides of the bowl.

Pour the batter into the pan. Bake the cake until the center springs back when lightly touched, about 40 minutes. Invert the cake onto a wire rack to cool completely.

GANACHE

1 1/2 cups whipping cream

18 ounces semisweet chocolate (squares or chips)

Bring the whipping cream to a simmer. Remove from the heat. Stir in the chocolate pieces until smooth.

Remove 1 1/2 cups of the ganache and set aside at room temperature. Refrigerate the remaining 1 cup until thick and creamy, 1 hour.

ASSEMBLY

2 tablespoons orange-flavored liqueur, such as Grand Marnier

Ganache

Mandarin oranges, for garnish, optional

Split the cake into 3 horizontal layers. Drizzle the orange-flavored liqueur over each layer. Frost the layers with the chilled Ganache. Pour the remaining Ganache over the top. Garnish with the oranges.

8 to 10 servings. Each of 10 servings: 562 calories; 314 mg sodium; 138 mg cholesterol; 36 grams fat; 21 grams saturated fat; 63 grams carbohydrates; 7 grams protein; 4.65 grams fiber.

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