18
Feb
09

grand marnier cake

Having made some delectable rum cakes and irish cream cakes before, I decided to try my hand at another liquor-enhanced dessert… grand marnier!  As most of us (alcoholics) know, grand marnier has a flavor that goes well with fruits like oranges (since the liquor contains some essence of orange itself), which explains the inclusion of orange zest and freshly squeezed orange juice in this cake.  Although a bit more work and ingredients than most bundt cakes, the execution is pretty simple.  The miniature chocolate chips are optional but really add another dimension to the final product.

Grand Marnier Cake

Grand Marnier Cake

After this cake, I’m going to try to focus on non-cakes for a while if I can (but who knows, I always seem to gravitate back to Cake Bible).  At the very least, no more bundt cakes for a while; I just received some new decorating tools, stencils and piping tips, so I should probably give those a shot.  And I still want to try my hand at some fruit tarts and custards 🙂

Unfortunately, I feel I might have left the cake in the oven a bit too long, because it wasn’t as moist as I wanted.  I keep forgetting my oven seems to run warmer than its temperature indicates, because I always have to remove my desserts 5-10 minutes before most recipes call for it.  This particular recipe suggests a baking time of 55-65 minutes, and I removed it at 50 minutes… but even then, I feel it was overdone.  Oh well, keep an eye out on that timer!

Additionally, to toast the almonds, I baked about a cup worth of sliced almonds at 350 degF for 5-6minutes (until it was golden).  Don’t overbake!  The smell of the toasted almonds should be pleasant, not burnt!  I then ground them in a food processor for about a minute before adding to the batter.  A cup of sliced almonds gave me about 3/4 cup of ground almonds.

Grand Marnier Cake

from The Cake Bible by Rose Levy Beranbaum

Ingredients

  • Cake Batter:
  • 1/2 cup chocolate mini-chips or bittersweet chocolate chopped into 1/4-inch pieces
  • 1/4 teaspoon Grand Marnier
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cake flour
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 cup full-fat sour cream
  • 2 teaspoons orange-flour water or
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons Vanilla extract
  • 2 1/2 cups sifted cake flour + 1/2 cup (ground) unblanched sliced almonds, toasted and finely ground
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3/4 teaspoon grated orange zest
  • 1 cup unsalted butter
  • Grand Marnier Syrup:
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup orange juice, freshly squeezed
  • 1/3 cup Grand Marnier
  • One 9-cup fluted tube pan, greased and floured

Directions

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degF. In a small bowl toss the chocolate chips and Grand Marnier until the chips are moistened and shiny. Add the 1 1/2 teaspoons flour and toss until evenly coated.

Ingredients

Ingredients

2. In a medium bowl lightly combine the eggs, 1/4 cup sour cream, an orange flower water or vanilla.

3. In a large mixing bowl combine the dry ingredients and orange zest and mix on low speed for 30 seconds to blend. Add the butter and remaining 3/4 cup sour cream. Mix on low speed until the dry ingredients are moistened. Increase to medium speed (high if using a hand mixer) and beat for 1 1/2 minutes to aerate and develop the cake’s structure. Scrape down the sides. Gradually add the egg mixture in three batches, beating for 20 seconds after each addition to incorporate the ingredients and strengthen the structure. Scrape down the sides. Stir in the chocolate chips.

Mixing the ingredients

Mixing the ingredients

4. Scrape the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the surface 55 to 65 minutes or until a wire cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean and the cake springs back when pressed lightly in the center. The cake should start to shrink from the sides of the pan only after removal from the oven.

5. Shortly before the cake is done, prepare the syrup: Heat the sugar, orange juice, and Grand Marnier until the sugar is dissolved. Do not boil. As soon as the cake comes out of the oven, place the pan on a rack, poke the top all over with a wire tester, and brush on 1/2 the syrup. Cool in the pan on a rack for 10 minutes, then invert onto a serving plate or cardboard round. Brush with the remaining syrup and cool completely before wrapping.

Apply syrup and cool

Apply syrup and cool

6. Serve room temperature with a light dusting of powdered sugar, if desired.  I used half recipe of Rose’s Chocolate Cream, provided below.  The ingredients are the same as typical ganache, although it’s a bit thicker than most ganache I use.

Apply the ganache if desired

Apply the ganache if desired

Chocolate Cream Glaze (optional)

from The Cake Bible by Rose Levy Beranbaum

Ingredients (halve the amounts if using to top the Grand Marnier cake)

  • 9 oz bittersweet chocolate
  • 8 oz (1 cup) heavy cream
  • 1 TBSP cognac (optional – only needed if using lower quality chocolate to bring out flavor)

Directions

1. Break the chocolate into pieces and finely chop (I used a food processor) and place in a small bowl or saucepan.

2. Heat the cream to the boiling point and pour about 3/4 of it over the chocolate.  Cover for 5 minutes to allow the chocolate to melt.

3. Gently stir together until smooth, trying not to create air bubbles.  If desired, pass thruogh a fine strainer, stir in optional cognac, and allow to cool until just tepid.

4. If the cream seems too thick or curdled, add some more of the heavy cream and repeat.

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2 Responses to “grand marnier cake”


  1. 1 Patrick
    February 21, 2009 at 9:11 am

    Can I room with you?


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