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Chocolate, Hazelnut & Coffee Cake with Mascarpone Cheese Icing

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Level: Intermediate

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Description

Divine, crunchy, and creamy. A perfect mix for a perfect cake.

Ingredients

  • 1 box (about 18 Oz.) Moist Chocolate Cake Mix
  • _____
  • HAZELNUT CRUNCH INGREDIENTS:
  • ½ cups Toasted, Skinned Hazelnuts
  • ½ cups Chocolate Covered Coffee Beans
  • ⅓ cups Water
  • ⅔ cups Sugar
  • _____
  • FOR THE ICING:
  • 16 ounces, weight Mascarpone Cheese
  • 1 cup Cream
  • ¾ cups Powdered Sugar
  • 1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
  • _____
  • Topping Ingredients
  • ¼ cups Bittersweet Chocolate Chips
  • 1 Tablespoon Sugar
  • 1 teaspoon Orange Zest

Preparation

Preheat oven 35o degrees F.

Butter and flour two 8″ cake pans. Prepare cake mix as directed on the box. You can split the water in the mixture to half part water and half part prepared coffee, or just replace it entirely with prepared coffee to give the cake an extra rich flavor.

Divide batter between both cake pans and bake according to package directions for the minimum amount of time. Check with a toothpick to see if the cakes are done. When done, remove cakes from the oven and cool in the pan on a cooling rack for 10 minutes. Then dump the cakes on parchment paper to cool completely.

Chop the chocolate-covered coffee beans into small pieces. Place beans and hazelnuts on a parchment-lined cookie sheet. Meanwhile, bring to 2/3 cup sugar and 1/3 cup water to a boil, stirring until sugar is dissolved. Continue to cook for 6 to 8 minutes, until simple syrup is golden in color. Remove from heat and pour over the hazelnut, coffee bean mixture. Refrigerate for 30 minutes, then remove and pound into small pieces. Set aside.

With a mixer, beat the mascarpone cheese, cream, powdered sugar and vanilla until stiff peaks are formed. Fold in the hazelnut crunch mixture.

Place one cake on a cake platter and generously ice the top with the mascarpone icing. Add the second cake on top and carefully ice the top and sides of the cake.

In a food processor, pulse chocolate chips, orange zest and sugar until well mixed. Sprinkle on the top and sides of the cake.

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