This cake has been inspired by a famous Hungarian dessert called Somlói galuska. Traditionally, it consists of a sponge cake, raisins and nuts. All ingredients are soaked in rum, covered with chocolate and whipped cream. I have mood for it describing it only - Celebration Cake.
This Celebration Cake is made of 3 layers filled with a beautiful Crème Pâtissière. Therefore, it is, perhaps, more luxurious and impressive version of the Somlói galuska. Although, the original recipe is with walnuts, the twist with hazelnuts gives it smoother texture. Even though the preparation takes some time, it is really worth it, everyone will find a part, which he or she loves. Jó étvágyat!
My inspiration started over here, but I continued elsewhere in my head.
One time, I added Chocolate Topping, which made it even more luxurious. Perhaps little heavier, but lovely alternative, especially for the chocolate lovers.
For The Hazelnut Cake, you can either use 220g of hazelnuts or combine lower amount of hazelnuts with ground walnuts or almonds. Anything your fridge offers.
Celebration Cake must be made 1 day ahead, so it has time to chill, an overnight at least. The Hazelnut Cake is a double size of The Sponge Cakes. Do not worry, when The Crème Pâtissière gets in, it will do a magic. The Crème gets beautifully absorbed and optically equal the layers. So amazing!
The Celebration Cake is suitable for kids from the age of 3, because of the presence of allergens: nuts.
Total Time: 2 hours + overnight chill of the cake in the fridge
The Crème Pâtissière:
2 egg yolks
50g of caster superfine sugar
20g of plain flour, sifted
1 vanilla pod
175ml of whole milk
50ml of double cream, whipped into peaks
The Hazelnut Cake:
220g of peeled hazelnuts, mashed
3 yolks + 3 egg whites, whisked to snow peaks with a pinch of sea salt
150g of caster superfine sugar
Zest of ½ lemon
The Sponge Cakes:
160g of butter, soft in cubes
160g of caster superfine sugar
3 whole free range eggs
90+55g of plain flour, sifted
½+½ of teaspoon of baking powder, sifted
cocoa mix: 40g of good quality cocoa powder mixed with 2 tablespoons of hot boiling water + 1 tablespoon of caster superfine sugar
The Rum Syrup:
70g of caster superfine sugar
juice from ½ of lemon + pinch of lemon zest
juice from ½ of orange + pinch of orange zest
70ml of good quality dark rum
100g of nuts (mashed walnuts and hazelnuts), chocolate ganache, fresh fruits or flowers to decorate
The Crème Pâtissière
In a mixing bowl place the yolks with sugar and mix well until it becomes fluffy and homogeneous texture, for about 3 minutes.
Then, stir in the flour.
In a deep cooking pan pour the milk. Add vanilla pod with extracted seeds. Slowly bring it to boil. Then, take the vanilla pod out and slowly pour the mix into the mixing bowl with egg mix. Mix constantly.
Transfer The Crème back to the pan again and place over a medium heat. Bring to the boil, stirring constantly, until it begins to thicken, approximately for 5 minutes. Take it off the heat and place it in bowl with cold water to cool it down a bit.
Then, put the lid on and place it into the freezer for 1-2 hours. This way The Crème gets nicely firm.
Next, transfer it into the fridge. Once the cakes are cooled down, you will finish The Crème.
Preheat the oven to 180 degrees.
Prepare 3 cake tins (I used 17cm for the hazelnut cake on the top and 21cm for the sponge cakes. Other time all cake tins were 21cm).
The Hazelnut Cake
In a mixing bowl place the yolks and sugar and whisk until it thickens and becomes nicely fluffy, for about 5 minutes. While mixing, add pinch of lemon zest.
Stir in the hazelnuts with a spatula (half at a time). Mix well.
Then, stir in the egg whites (one third at a time), whisked with pinch of salt, and mix gently by using a spatula.
Mold the mixture into a lightly greased tin lined with a baking paper.
Bake in the oven until golden and dry in the middle. If you use smaller tin of 17cm, it takes around 35 minutes. If you use tin of 21cm, it is less, around 25 minutes.
Take the cake out and let it rest.
The Sponge Cakes
In a mixing bowl place the butter with sugar and mix until it gets fluffy and homogeneous texture, for about 5 minutes. While mixing, slowly stir in the eggs (one at a time).
Equally divide the mix into separate bowls.
Into the first one, stir in 90g of flour with ½ of teaspoon of baking powder.
Mix well with a spatula and place the mix into a lightly greased tin lined with a baking paper. Beat it against the table, so you release the air from the dough.
Into the second one, stir in 55g of flour with ½ of teaspoon of baking powder. Add cocoa mix and whisk until it becomes smooth texture. Pour the mix into a lightly greased tin lined with a baking paper. Beat it against the table, so you release the air from the dough.
Place both cakes into the oven and bake for about 25 minutes until the wooden stick comes clean from the middle. Take them out and let them cool down entirely.
When the cakes are cooled down, remove them gently from tins.
The Rum Syrup
On medium heat in a small deep cooking pan place all the ingredients (sugar, water, rum, orange and lemon juice + zest).
Slowly bring it to boil until the sugar is dissolved completely and the alcohol got vaporized.
Place all the cakes upside-down on plates.
Spoon The Rum Syrup among surface of each. Let it absorb for about 5 minutes and continue until the syrup is gone. Note that The Sponge Cakes are thinner and The Hazelnut Cake is thicker. Therefore, don't make it too soggy, so they won't fall apart.
Next, take The Crème Pâtissière out of the fridge. First, whisk The Crème until smooth texture and stir in the whipped cream.
Take a wide plate to serve the cake on. Place little bit of The Crème in the middle, so the cake will be stable.
Layering of the cakes is up to you. Depending on color you want on the top and the topping you want to decorate it with. However, note that The Sponge Cakes look smooth and impressive. They are also lighter, therefore, it is easier to have them on the top of The Hazelnut Cake.
First, transfer The Hazelnut Cake (upside-down) onto a serving plate.
Then, spread half of The Crème Pâtissière on the top. Starting in the middle, little bit wider. Not all the way to the sides, so it won't start leaking too much.
Second, Plain Sponge Cake (upside-down).
Then, spread the rest of The Crème Pâtissière on the top. You can also save a bit of The Crème for the top. No limits to imagination.
Third, Dark Sponge Cake on the top. Flip it smooth side on the top.
Now you can put a final layer of The Crème and sprinkle with nuts. Refrigerate for further processing or serving.
Makes 12 serves.