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Tamara Jane's special cake recipes - 24 June

Chocolate hazelnut gateau

Opera gateau

Chocolate Hazelnut Gateau

Prep and cooking time: 2 hours plus 2 hours for the ganache
Cost $12
Serves 6

6 x 59g eggs, at room temperature
1 cup caster sugar
1 cup self-raising flour
3/4 cup cocoa powder
2 tablespoons cornflour
1/4 cup milk
125g roasted hazelnuts, roughly chopped
Milk chocolate ganache
400g milk chocolate, roughly chopped
3/4 cup cream

Dark chocolate ganache
200g good-quality dark chocolate, roughly chopped
1/2 cup cream
Sugared rose petals
6 roses, petals removed
1 eggwhite, lightly beaten
1/2 cup caster sugar

1. Preheat oven to 180degC. Grease and line a 24cm (base) springform cake pan.
2. Using an electric mixer, beat eggs and sugar on high speed for 8 to 10 minutes, or until pale and thick. Sift flour, cocoa and cornflour over egg mixture.
3. Using a large metal spoon, gently fold ingredients together until just combined. Fold in milk. Spoon mixture into prepared cake pan.
4. Bake for 40 to 45 minutes, or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. Cool in pan for 10 minutes. Turn onto a wire rack to cool.
5. Make ganaches: Place milk chocolate and cream into a heatproof bowl over a saucepan of simmering water. Stir constantly with a metal spoon until smooth. Remove from heat. Refrigerate until thick enough to spread. Repeat step 5 with dark chocolate and cream.
6. Make petals: Line a baking tray with baking paper. Use a small brush to paint petals with eggwhite. Sprinkle with sugar. Place onto tray until set.
7. Using a serrated knife, slice cake into 4 even rounds. Place bottom round onto a serving plate. Spread with one-third of the milk chocolate ganache. Sprinkle with one-third of the hazelnuts. Repeat twice more, finishing with cake. Spread top and sides of cake with dark chocolate ganache. Decorate with sugared petals.

Gateau Opera

Preparation and cooking time: 2 hours
Cost: $12
Serves 6

85g caster sugar
3 eggs
3 eggwhites
100g almond meal
30g plain flour, sifted
1/4 tsp baking powder
150g dark chocolate, melted, cooled

Butter cream
55g caster sugar
2 egg yolks
3 tsp instant coffee powder
140g unsalted butter, softened

70g dark chocolate, broken up
85ml milk
170ml thick cream, whipped

1 tsp instant coffee powder
100g caster sugar

1. Preheat oven to 200degC. Grease and line base of a 20cm square cake pan.
2. Beat the sugar and 3 eggs in an electric mixer for 5 minutes or until pale. In a separate bowl, whisk eggwhites until stiff peaks form, then fold into the egg mixture. Combine almond meal, flour and baking powder and carefully fold into egg mixture. Spread into pan and bake for 20 minutes or until cooked. When cool, remove from pan and carefully cut into 3 thin layers.
3. To make butter cream, heat sugar and 100ml of water in a saucepan over low heat, stirring until sugar dissolves. Increase heat and boil for 5 minutes or until thick and sticky. Remove from heat. Whisk egg yolks, then pour into hot syrup. Continue whisking until thick and cool. Dissolve coffee in 1 tablespoon of boiling water and whisk into egg mixture with the butter. Cool completely.
4. To make ganache, place chocolate in a heatproof bowl over a saucepan of simmering water (don't let the bowl touch the water), until the chocolate melts. Bring milk to the boil in a separate saucepan then combine with chocolate. Remove from heat and cool, stirring occasionally. Fold cream into the chocolate mixture.
5. To make syrup, place coffee, sugar and 100ml of water in a saucepan over low heat until the sugar dissolves. Increase heat and boil for 2 minutes, then cool.
6. Place the base layer of cake on a serving plate. Brush with 1/3 of the syrup, spread with all the butter cream, then carefully place another layer of cake on top. Brush with another 1/3 of the syrup and spread with ganache. Place final layer of cake on top and brush with remaining syrup. Refrigerate for 30 minutes to firm. Spread the melted chocolate over cake, reserving a little to be placed in a piping bag. Pipe the word 'opera' on the cake.