Saturday, March 23, 2013

Raspberry Chocolate Torte

This might be one of the very best desserts in my arsenal. It is a show stopper for sure. Every time I bake this torte people say, "Did you really make this?" It truly looks and tastes like it comes from an elegant bakery. My mother in law, Mary, gave me this recipe years ago. The recipe comes from a cooking class she took titled "Candlelight Dinner" in San Diego over a decade ago. I am very glad she shared it with me!! It is actually not that difficult, but, it does require time, patience and a spring form pan! So, make sure you have all of those before you begin!! It also requires high quality ingredients - no Hershey bars, please, folks! It's an expensive torte to make, but, I guarantee if you bought this at a high-end bakery you'd pay a high price to bring this home! Enjoy!!

6 oz high quality dark chocolate (I used 2 Lindt bars - go for 70% to 80% dark chocolate)
3/4 cup butter
2 cups white sugar
3 eggs
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup flour
1 cup coarsely chopped hazelnuts (I just use a knife)
1 cup heavy whipping cream
6 oz semi-sweet chocolate chips
1/4 cup plus 3 Tbl SEEDLESS raspberry jam
fresh raspberries

Preheat oven to 350F

Grease a 10 inch spring-form pan

Melt 4 oz high quality dark chocolate and butter in a microwave safe bowl in the microwave on high for 2 minutes. Stir until chocolate is completely melted. Stir sugar into chocolate until well blended. Mix in eggs and vanilla. Stir in flour and chopped hazelnuts until well blended. Spread in prepared pan.

Bake for 30 to 35 minutes or until "dry" on the surface and set. DO NOT OVER-BAKE. Cool completely in pan (about 45 minutes). Spread 1/4 cup seedless raspberry jam over the cooled torte.

Place remaining 2 oz dark chocolate and semi-sweet chocolate chips in a medium bowl. Heat whipping cream in a small saucepan on low heat until simmering gently. Pour hot cream over chocolate chips. Let stand 1 minute. Add 3 Tbl seedless raspberry jam to cream and chocolate chips; stir with a wire whisk until smooth. Spread chocolate mixture over jam layer on torte.

Refrigerate until chocolate mixture is set, at least one hour (if you have time for longer, that is even better). Remove pan ring and bottom pan from torte (this takes some skill- I have used a large spatula to help me do this) and place on a cake stand. Decorate with fresh raspberries (make sure the raspberries are dry....plan to wash the raspberries long before you need to decorate the torte with them). Cut into wedges and serve!

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