Kenwood Disaster Chef 2015 Week 2 Recipe Challenge – Chocolate Salted Caramel Meringue Cake

I’m having so much fun on my Kenwood Disaster Chef journey.  This week’s recipe Chocolate Salted Caramel Meringue Cake looks like a real show stopper and was created by Miranda Gore Browne, Great British Bake Off finalist and cookery writer.

After watching Miranda’s video I was eager to start this rather technical challenge and wow my family and friends.

Ingredients

  • 6 Egg whites (large sized)
  • 255g Caster sugar
  • 255g Granulated sugar
  • 400g Plain chocolate (Bourneville is recommended)
  • 400ml Double cream
  • 10 tablespoon / half a tin Nestle Caramel or Dulce de Leche
  • 1 teaspoon Sea salt
  • ½ Lemon
  • 150g Toasted nuts (whole almonds, flaked almonds, hazelnuts)
  • 100g Plain chocolate (or a bag of pre made chocolate curls) to decorate

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Method:

  1. Preheat the oven to 120˚C and line two low sided or flat baking sheets with baking paper – draw round a 7 inch cake tin three times (or an 8 inch cake tin twice)
  2. Wipe the inside of the mixing bowl with the cut side of a lemon
  3. Carefully separate the eggs
  4. Whisk the egg whites in the Kenwood Chef Sense using the whisk attachment. Whisk until stiff peaks form and you can hold the bowl upside down over your head! This will take about 2 minutes
  5. With the machine running on high speed, add the caster sugar a tablespoon at a time. Whisk until stiff and glossy – this will take about 1 minute
  6. Reduce the speed and sprinkle in the granulated sugar, a tablespoon at a time. Whisk well on a low speed after each spoonful and continue whisking until the meringue is glossy and well combined which will take about 2 minutes
  7. Spoon onto the baking paper and use a palette knife to gently create the circular shapes
  8. Bake in the preheated oven for about 1 hour, then keeping the oven door closed, reduce the temperature to 100˚C and bake for a further 2 hours or switch the oven off and leave the door closed and the meringue in the oven overnight
  9. To make the ganache, break the chocolate and put it into a heatproof bowl with the cream. Set over a pan of simmering water to melt, making sure the bowl doesn’t touch the water – this usually takes about 10 minutes
  10. Once the chocolate has melted, remove the bowl from the heat and use a wooden spoon to stir it into the cream. Leave it to cool at room temperature until it reaches a spreading consistency – this will take a few hours, or leave overnight in a cool place (do not refrigerate)
  11. To make the salted caramel, put the caramel in a heatproof bowl and warm gently in the microwave for 30 seconds, mix well with a wooden spoon until smooth and glossy. Add the sea salt and stir again
  12. Use a blob of ganache to stick the base meringue to your plate or cake stand (so it doesn’t slide off the plate when serving)
  13. Spread about half of the ganache over the base meringue, drizzle with the salted caramel and then place the second meringue on top. Gently spread the second meringue with ganache and drizzle with salted caramel before placing the last meringue on top
  14. To decorate, sprinkle with the toasted nuts, drizzle over more salted caramel and finish with some grated chocolate or chocolate curls
  15. To toast the nuts, place them on a baking tray and pop in the oven for about 8 minutes to toast

I measured out all my ingredients and carefully separated the eggs. I was happy I didn’t get any yolks in my egg whites.

I wiped my bowl with the lemon, great tip. Thank you Miranda!

With my egg whites in the bowl I started to whisk until stiff peaks formed

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My Kenwood Chef Sense made whisking the egg whites so effortless.

Next I added the caster sugar a tablespoon at a time and whisked on high speed until stiff and glossy.   Then reduce the speed and add the granulated sugar a tablespoon at a time until it is well combined and glossy.

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I lined my baking sheets with baking paper but I didn’t have a 7 or 8 inch cake tin to draw my circles so I used a small plate.

I then spooned my meringue onto the baking paper

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I figured out 120°C was gas mark 1 and popped my meringues into the oven.

Now onto the making the ganache.

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After 1 hour I went to turn down my oven to 100° but my oven kept switching off.  I carefully turned the dial so the flame didn’t go off again and left the meringue for another 2 hours.

I got my meringues out of the oven and they didn’t look anything like Miranda’s.

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Mine were a bit brown and huge so I think my oven was too hot and I should have spread my meringue more evenly on the tray. Lessons for next time!

After dinner my tasting crew were eagerly waiting for my show stopping dessert.

I got my salted caramel, toasted nuts and chocolate curls ready.  Now onto the assembly, this bit was fun.

 

This challenge was a mission and I was glad when it was all done.  My tasting crew were impressed and we all enjoyed eating it.

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Stay tuned for Week 3 recipe challenge – Pork and Vegetable Wontons in a spicy oil dressing

You can check out the Contestant blogs to see how the other contestants are getting on with the challenges.

What do you think of this week’s recipe challenge?  Please feel free to comment below.

Lola 🙂

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