Peppermint Meringue Cake, Part III
Ok, I need to get this out before I start with the cake. I was just watching Food Network for half an hour -- a measly half hour -- and heard the phrase "party in your mouth" not once, not twice, but THREE times. On two different shows. From very respected cooks. I do not like that phrase. That is all.
Anyway, cake. Back on track here. Day three is admittedly both the longest and most tedious. I admit it: putting the cake together isn't exactly easy. I wouldn't say it's too difficult either though. It just requires patience.
First though, there is the matter of creating the actual cake part of the cake.
Surprisingly, for a cake from a gourmet magazine, the actual cake is fairly simple. The batter really reminds me of chocolate mousse. It's really light from all the beating. It's also a light chocolate cake, but don't worry, that will be more than compensated for later.
Oh, and if you can save two of the yolks from the meringues, it saves using two more eggs and discarding (or eating) the yolks before and the whites now.
Also, if you do make this cake, it calls for a 13X9 pan, and I've found that one of our regular large brownie pans works wonderfully -- it actually requires almost no trimming afterwards.
Don't worry that it seems like there's not much batter. It's supposed to be a thin layer. Otherwise the cake, when completed, would be pretty tall and look funny.
Also, have I mentioned how much I love that they sell baking spray with flour in it already for baking now? I don't use it often, but when I do, it saves a lot of mess. If you haven't figured out what happens when I touch flour, you will eventually. (It's a big mess. No matter what.)
Hint: to get the parchment to line the bottom nicely, trace around the outside of the pan, then cut a tiny bit inside the lines. It works nicely.
Actually, if I had been planning on getting the cake done as efficiently as possible, I would have made the frosting first. But I was meeting a friend from high school in the middle of the day and knew it would have time to set then.
If you've never made buttercream frosting before, it's actually pretty simple. Amazingly. At least this one is. You heat BUTTER and CREAM (plus a little corn syrup, but it would sound funny if they called it buttercornsyrupcream frosting).
Then, it calls for a full pound and a half of 60% (ish) cacao chocolate. That's two bags of chocolate chips. It's pretty crazy stuff.
I actually felt the need to go and do penance in the form of walking on the treadmill just from licking the stuff off my fingers, well, and the spatula afterwards. (Hence the watching the Food Network. I must say, watching it while walking or running almost feels like cheating.) I kind of wish I had been awake enough to go for a run, because it's been way too long. But I was already exhausted from making the cake. So I settled for walking.
Anyway, back to the frosting. It says to let it sit for an hour to an hour and a half, but both years, it hasn't been ready at that point. I think I've actually ended up putting it in the fridge both times. Be careful with this though, because if it's in too long, it will harden. Fast. So keep checking it.
Now, to put it together. Big breath. I can do this.