Monday, November 21, 2011

Bernachon Palet d'Or

This cake is the one on the cover of the book; a single layer, richly chocolaty cake enrobed in the shiny lacquer glaze and fancied up with currants and edible gold leaf. The recipe for the Bernachon Palet d'Or takes up several pages and looks daunting, but I assure you there are only three components and all of them are easy. If you love chocolate then you need to make this cake.

Bernachon Palet d'Or

November 21, 2011
Name of Cake: Ta-Da!
Occasion: HCB
Constituents: one 9 inch layer sour cream chocolate cake, frosted with creme fraiche ganache, glazed with lacquer glaze and decorated with currants

The cake, made with sour cream and a good amount of butter, is baked in the familiar two-stage method. Instead of blooming the cocoa powder in boiling water, it is mixed in with the sour cream and eggs. Half of that is added to the dry ingredients and butter which are beat for 90 seconds. The rest of the sour cream stuff is added in two parts. The resulting batter is so thick and rich that had I not known better, I would have thought it was a bowlful of chocolate buttercream. This gets baked for about 30 minutes.

Bernachon Palet d'Or

The ganache is made with creme fraiche, a little bit of heavy cream, and a couple of tablespoons of butter. There is the option to make the sour cream ganache, but I thought I'd try the creme fraiche version. It is not quite as tangy as the sour cream ganache but just as velvety. I made the ganache the old fashioned way, by chopping up the chocolate very finely and pouring the scalded dairy products over.

Bernachon Palet d'Or

After the cake is frosted with the ganache and all surfaces smoothed out, it is time to make and glaze the cake. The glaze is easy to make and it is always fun to pour it over the cake. I decided to do two coats, as I missed a couple of spot on the sides and it was just fun to do. It take several hours for the glaze to set, but since my kitchen is quite cold this time of year it didn't take nearly as long. I had frozen some red currants over the summer in anticipation of this cake so I defrosted some for this photo session.

Bernachon Palet d'Or

This is a wonderfully decadent cake. The cake itself melts in your mouth it is so tender, and the rich ganache and bittersweet ganache are excellent components. I think I will need a little vanilla ice cream and a cup of tea to accompany my slice of cake, which is never a bad idea. I like that it is pretty easy to put together and yet is a show-stopper of a dessert.

Bernachon Palet d'Or

It is quite dark this time of year in the PNW; not only does the sun set around 4:30 but the skies are laden with dark gray clouds. Check out how dark my living room was by 4:00!

Bernachon Palet d'Or

Anyway I brought that up because I had fun photographing this cake, on that glass plate, with my limited light.

Bernachon Palet d'Or

Bernachon Palet d'Or

Bernachon Palet d'Or

Bernachon Palet d'Or

I almost forgot! Here's Marie's Bernachon Palet d'Or from the original bakethrough, and the Last Cake, Next Cake roundup of participants.

14 comments:

  1. Great pictures! I always struggle with late afternoon pictures this time of year. It's especially bad with chocolate cakes, so congratulations on some great pictures, and a gorgeous cake!

    ReplyDelete
  2. WOW!!!!! Beautiful! When your blog came up I thought you had put the cover picture from RHC up in your post. Brava!!

    ReplyDelete
  3. Amazing.. how it looks just like the one in the book... I love the lacquer glaze.. one of my favorite things that I learned from Rose!

    ReplyDelete
  4. I'm still stuck at two types of ganache... Seriously I have to get my hands on this book!

    OMG your photography is stunning. Low light battle just adds to their brilliance. Being a bit further north than you I totally understand the drama.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Kristina, thank you! Yeah you guys can't have it any easier when it comes to light during the winter. At least the snow can bounce back some light!

    raiuchka, thanks lady!

    Monica, I took a look at your Palet d'What What and I love the gold flecks in the glaze--so stunning!

    Allison, you're a baker! You need this book! When we meet up at Rachel's house I'll be sure to bring it so you can check it out (whenever we do that).

    ReplyDelete
  6. Well...that turned out stunning! I love your fading light pictures. It is also is getting dark here at 1600 in England. (It is a grey old day today at 1300.)
    This looks like such a good cake to make for Christmas time. x

    ReplyDelete
  7. How funny...2 days ago I scrolled back through all your posts trying to find if you had made this cake, since I am going to try the lacquer glaze today! I need a chocolate cake with raspberry ganache...I was planning on making the cake that is baked in the heart pan with raspberries on top...now I"m wondering if I should make this one instead. Dilemma! Either way, it will have rasp ganache and lacquer glaze, which i've never done before. I'm happy that you say it is easy! Yours is gorgeous!

    ReplyDelete
  8. Sorry for the late comment! I LOVE your Bernachon. It looks perfect - just like the picture on the book. And I really enjoyed your fun photography experiment. The glass plate works well to reflect whatever remaining light you have.

    PS: I covet your beautiful lacquer glaze :).

    ReplyDelete
  9. Melinda, thanks! This would be perfect for Christmas time. The lacquer glaze makes everything fancy.

    Amanda, how did you cake turn out? The glaze really is easy; I hope it didn't give you trouble.

    Jenn, yes, the glass plate was remarkably light reflecty. I might not have strained the glaze twice if I hadn't read your post first, so thank you for sharing your lesson!

    ReplyDelete
  10. Wow, it's gorgeous!!! What a great job. And wow, look how dense and chocolaty it is!!! It almost looks like a flourless choc torte. And the red currants are a perfect contrast for that dark. No wonder you deserve Jenn's pick of FB of the week. Congrats my friend, and a very happy Thanksgiving!! :o)

    ReplyDelete
  11. You got it so smooth! Well done. I might do this for Christmas!

    ReplyDelete
  12. Hanaa, thank you! It is a really dense cake; perfect when you need a break from pumpkin pie :)

    Mr. P, thank you and this would be a perfect Christmas cake. Thanks for stopping by!

    ReplyDelete
  13. ECL, your cake is perfect! Also, I love that you froze the currants in anticipation of this cake. I will definitely have to try this show-stopper very soon. Maybe for a holiday party...or any random weekday. xoxo

    ReplyDelete
  14. Sarah, thanks! A cake like this would make any random weekday and holiday.

    ReplyDelete