Another week, another mate's birthday! And this time I rustled up a real cake classic, the super rich, super chocolatey, super indulgent Sacher torte! Well not quite, I am a decent baker but I am no future 'Great British Bake Off' contestant so I made a slightly simplified, yet no less tasty tray bake version!
You still get the light, chocolatey sponge (thanks to a soft meringue mixed through the dough), a layer of apricot jam and of course the glossy dark chocolate ganache topping but there is zero hassle of cutting a cake in half or tempering the chocolate, in face I had this done and dusted, ready to surprise my friend with in a couple of hours on a Thursday evening.
Even better the end result was super tasty, even for me who usually really doesn't love chocolate based sponges!
A tray that is sophisticated and will impress a crowd, no one needs to know it is super easy and quick to make ;)
- 200g semi dark chocolate (I went for 54% cocoa)
- 6 eggs separated
- 2 cups plus 1 tablespoon (300 g) all-purpose flour
- 2 ½ teaspoons baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 14 tablespoons (200 g) butter room temperature
- 2 ¾ cups (300 g) powdered sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 cup (250 ml) milk room temperature
- About 1 generous cup (300 g) apricot jam (ideally seedless)
- 14 tablespoons (7 ounces or 200 g) butter cubed
- 300g semi dark chocolate, chopped
- 1 ½ tablespoons oil
- Preheat oven to 170°C.
- Grease 40x32 cm baking tray with butter.
- For the cake: beat egg whites until stiff peaks form, set aside.
- In a separate bowl, stir together flour, baking powder and salt and set aside.
- In a large mixing bowl, beat eggs yolks, butter, powdered sugar and vanilla until fluffy.
- Alternately add melted chocolate, milk and the flour mixture and beat on low speed to combine.
- Fold in one-third of the beaten egg whites, then fold in the rest of the egg whites.
- Spread batter in prepared pan and bake for about 25 minutes.
- Test for doneness with a wooden toothpick.
- Cool completely in pan on a wire rack.
- For the ganache: melt butter and chocolate in a double boiler or in one-minute intervals in the microwave. Stir until completely smooth.
- Stir in oil.
- Chill ganache until slightly thickened.
- Gently heat the jam to thin it.
- Spread jam over cooled cake.
- Spread chocolate ganache over the jam and allow it to set before cutting cake.
- Stored at room temperature, cake bars will stay fresh for 2-3 days, in the refrigerator for up to one week.