Almond Gateau with Praline Buttercream
It’s time for another Daring Bakers’ Challenge, this time a complex cake that kept me busy for about six hours. The original recipe is a Filbert Gateau with Praline Buttercream from Carol Walter’s “Great Cakes.” I prefer almonds over hazelnuts, so I made that little substitution.
For such a seemingly simple looking cake, there were tons of steps. In fact, there were so many steps, that I meticulously read through the recipe multiple times and made a to-do list. Alas, I forgot to do one of the last steps (I noticed my bowl of apricot glaze just sitting there minutes after applying my ganache.)
What I really liked about this challenge is that I learned a new technique for making ganache. I found that by grinding up the chocolate before adding the warmed sweetened cream made it much easier to blend and get a smooth, silky texture.
Also, do not even try and attempt this recipe without a food processor. I don’t think my Cuisinart has ever seen this much action.
My final thoughts on the Almond Gateau with Praline Buttercream are: 1) the praline buttercream was awesome and would be a delicious filling for a chocolate cake, and 2) the texture of this cake just wasn’t for me. Because of the all the nuts it was very mealy and I think I like a spongier cake.
My decorating skills are atrocious, so to see some truly spectacular pastry bag technicians, head on over the DB Blog Roll and check out other versions of this cake. Or, try it yourself – the recipe can be seen on SacFoodies here.