Monday, October 5, 2009

Uncanny Resemblance

When I bought a new dining room set for the dollhouse the other day at the Wharf Shop (why not, I thought? I've already bought the kitchen sink), I didn't know why I felt compelled to buy this miniature cake, too. When I got home, I remembered I had made an almost identical one for Icebox Cakes. Here's the recipe:

Raspberry Mousse Icebox Cake
Serves 8

10 Drakes Devil Dogs
1 1/4 teaspoons unflavored gelatin
2 tablespoons cold water
1/2 pint box fresh raspberries
6 tablespoons sugar
2 cups heavy cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
10 ounces best-quality milk chocolate, finely chopped
2 tablespoons unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder

1. Line the bottom of a 91/2x4-inchx3-inch loaf pan with a rectangle of parchment paper.
2. Sprinkle the gelatin over the cold water in a small bowl and let soften for 2 minutes.
3. Combine the raspberries and sugar in a medium-size heavy saucepan and cook over medium-low heat, stirring a few times, until the sugar dissolves and the mixture is warm to the touch, 5 to 7 minutes. Stir in the gelatin mixture. Let cool to room temperature, stirring occasionally.
4. Combine 1 cup heavy cream and vanilla in a large bowl and, using an electric mixer, whip until stiff peaks form. Gently fold in the cooled raspberry mixture, taking care not to deflate the cream.
5. Place five devil dogs width-wise in the bottom of the pan. Pour half of the mousse over the cakes, smoothing with a rubber spatula. Place the remaining five devil dogs over the mousse, and pour the remaining mousse on top of this layer of cakes, again, smoothing with a rubber spatula. 6.Tap the pan on the countertop a couple of times to ensure that the mousse gets into every crevice. Cover with plastic wrap and freeze until firm, at least 3 hours and up to 1 day.
7.Combine the chocolate and cocoa in a large mixing bowl. Bring the remaining 1 cup heavy cream just to a boil in a small saucepan over medium-low heat. Pour the hot cream into the bowl and let the mixture stand for 5 minutes. Whisk until smooth. Pour the ganache through a strainer into a clean measuring cup. Cool to warm room temperature.
8.Remove the pan from the freezer. Run a sharp paring knife around the edge to loosen the cake. Place a wire rack over the pan and turn over. Gently tap to release. Peel the parchment from the cake.
9.Place the wire rack over a rimmed baking sheet. Pour the ganache over the top of the cake and let it drip down the sides, so that it completely covers the cake. Smooth the leftover ganache on the bottom of the baking sheet over the cake to create a smooth surface. Let stand for 15 minutes to allow the ganache to firm up a bit. Use a wide spatula to transfer to a serving platter. Garnish with raspberries, slice, and serve.

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