I eat cake because it’s somebody’s birthday somewhere. Well, today it’s my birthday and I’m happy to celebrate with you around this chocolate-mandarin meringue cake.
For the chocolate filling:
- 2 Tablespoons mandarin zest
- 1/2 cup (70g) dark chocolate, 70% cocoa
- 1/4 cup (60g) unsalted butter
- 1 1/2 Tablespoon (25g) confectioner’s sugar
- 2 Tablespoons (15g) unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1 Tablespoon (15g) sugar
For the mandarine curd:
- 1/3 cup + 1 Tablespoon (100 ml) mandarin juice
- 3/4 cup (140g) sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 1/4 cup (65g) softened butter, diced
For the cake:
- 9 large eggs, white and yolk apart
- 3/4 cup (150g) sugar
- 3/4 cup (90g) corn starch
- 3/4 cup (90g) all-purpose flour
For the syrup:
- 1 lemon, juice
- 1 Tablespoon (15g) caster sugar
For the Italian meringue:
- 1/2 cup (100ml) water
- 1/2 cup (100g) caster sugar
- 2 egg whites
- For the chocolate filling: zest one mandarin. Melt chocolate and butter in the microwave or in a small saucepan. Add in the icing sugar, cocoa powder and mandarin zest. Stir well.
- For the mandarin curd: peel the madarin and mix them in the food processor. Pass them in the strainer to have only 100 ml juice, if possible. Pour the juice in the food processor, add the sugar and the eggs and mix again. Transfer to a medium-size saucepan over low heat and add the butter. Stir constantly until the butter melts. Increase the heat and continue stirring until you get a thick creamy consistency. The curd is ready when it coats the back of a spoon.
- Preheat the oven to 340°F (170°C) and line a 7-inch round form spring form with parchment paper.
- For the cake: beat the whites until almost fluffy and add sugar. Slowly incorporate yolks with a rubber spatula. Add corn starch and stir well.
- Pour one fourth of the batter into the prepared form and smooth the surface. Bake for about 8 minutes. The sponge cake must be supple.
- In the meantime, prepare the syrup by combining the ingredients together.
- Wait a few minutes until the cake cools, then brush one fourth of the lemon-sugar syrup on top evenly to moister the cake.
- Repeat 3 times with the remaining batter, so that you get 4 layers of cake.
- Assemble the cake: place one layer on a tray, and spread the mandarin curd over. Top with second layer of cake and spread the chocolate filling over. Top with a third layer of cake and top with the mandarin curd. Finally top with the fourth layer of cake.
- For the Italian meringue: mix water and sugar in a small saucepan, and heat the syrup to 240°F (115°C) without stirring.*
- Beat the whites and when they are foamy but not yet firm. Very gradually stream the hot sugar syrup into your egg whites as they continue to whip on low to medium speed. Once you’ve added all of the syrup, increase the mixer speed to medium-high. Continue mixing until the meringue reaches stiff peaks.
- Cover the cake with the Italian meringue, using a tablespoon to make some swirls. Gently brown with a hand held torch to create golden swirls.