Sunday 21 April 2013

Chocolate Mousse 'Mirror' Cake

Okay, so I thought it was my blog's 100th post today. Turns out, its the 99th. But I'm celebrating anyway.

A few weeks ago, I made a chocolate mousse 'mirror' cake that I saw in Patisserie Valerie, and it was just so pretty that I just had to make it. (See it here, what do you think? Do you think I did a good job? Yes??). 

The idea of being a 'mirror' cake is so that the chocolate glaze on top is meant to so so shiny that you primp in front of it. This didn't exactly happen with my version, but I'd rather not see my face covered in flour and chocolate anyway! 

But if you want the real deal, you should probably check out Pat Val. I've fallen in love with their mille feuille cake.

Oh oh and good luck to those running the London marathon today! I can see you out of my bedroom window and I am cheering you on!!!

And, to also celebrate, I'm going to tell you a completely random and unrelated story.

A while back, I went to dinner where I was meeting lots of people for the first time. Having a seating plan,p set for us, I was sat opposite a very lovely man and we promptly shook hands and did out introductions:

"Hello, I'm Xinmei,"

"Hi, I'm baaarrrb"


I'll put it down to the noisy room. So we carried on our conversation until it got to that point where I couldn't avoid saying his name any longer.

"I'm sorry, what did you say your name was again?"

"Oh, Barrrlm"

Hm. Okay. He had an American accent, and I'm bad enough at them already. Maybe it was a German name said in some strange German-American accent.

So I spent the whole evening calling him Barllm.

Ge next day, I was talking to a few friend and I mentioned that I sat next to a very nice guy called something like Barrrlmm? They looked confused for a bit. Then suddenly,

"Oh! You mean Bob! Oh yeah he's a nice guy."


So moving on, the recipe. I didn't know how they made it in Pat Val, so I pulled togehter some recipes I had lying around for mousse cake and chocolate ganache icing. Step by step instructions are below, and full recipe is at the bottom:

I've included photos with the recipe...hopefully it will help explain the long long recipe a bit better! Have a great lazy Sunday and a good week!

Chocolate mousse ‘mirror’ cake
Idea from Patisserie Valerie celebration cakes, recipe is my own
Takes a good half day to make
Serves about 12

Basic Chocolate Sponge Cake
4 free-range eggs
225g/8oz caster sugar
175g/6oz self-raising flour
30g/2oz cocoa powder
225g/8oz butter, melted

Milk chocolate mousse
130g/4½oz  milk chocolate, chopped
200g/7½oz/250ml whipping cream

Dark chocolate mousse
130g/4½oz   dark chocolate (at least 60% cocoa mass), chopped
200g/7½oz/250ml whipping cream

Chocolate ganache icing
250g/9oz dark chocolate (at least 60% cocoa mass), broken into pieces
250ml/200g double cream
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 tbsp golden syrup

Fruit topping
1 plum, sliced and sautéed in butter
Redcurrants, blackberries, pineapples, kiwi…whatever you can get your hands on!

1. Make the chocolate cake. eat oven to 180C/fan 160C/gas 4. Grease (with butter) and line (with baking paper) two round baking pans (around 20cm). Tip the caster into a mixing bowl and add the butter. Mix with a wooden spoon until incorporated. Add the eggs, one at a time, and mix vigorously – it will look a bit like its curdles, but that’s okay. Sift in the flour and cocoa powder and fold it into the mixture with a spoon.

(Alternatively… put all of the cake ingredients in and mix with a electric mixer. If you’re feeling lazy.)

2. Bake the cakes for about 20 minutes, or until a wooden skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean. Leave the cakes to cool completely (this is important! The cake must be cooled COMPLETELY!).

3. When the cakes have completely cooled, find a cake ring or cake pan that is about the same size and line the inside around the sides with baking paper and cling film– this way it helps when you’re taking the cake out. Put one of the cakes in the cake ring.

4. Make the milk chocolate mousse. Boil about 2 tablespoons into a saucepan and add the chopped milk chocolate and stir until completely melted. Wait for this mixture to cool before mixing with the cream. Whip the remainder of the whipping cream (the one set aside for the milk chocolate mousse), and fold about 1/3 of the whipped cream into the chocolate mixture to combined. Then, add this mixture to the remaining 2/3 of the whipped cream and fold together.

5. Pour the mousse into the prepare cake ring, on top of the chocolate cake. Refridgerate for about 2 hours or until the mousse is set. When it is set, put the other chocolate sponge cake on top of this mousse.

6. Make the dark chocolate mousse. Do exactly the same thing that you did with the milk chocolate mousse. Pour on top of the chocolate cake, and refrigerate for about 2 hours.

7. When all the mousses have set, you can make the ganache. Stir the double cream with the golden syrup in a small saucepan over medium heat until it comes to a boil. Remove from the heat and add the dark chocolate. Let it set for about 30 seconds, then stir to completely melt the chocolate. Stir in the vanilla and let it cool until tepid before glazing.

*****TIP!! Sometimes when making ganache, the fat from the chocolate separates and it goes all gloopy and you think it’s the end of the world. But fear not! What you need to do is actually add a teaspoon of hot water or hot cream and mix it again until it is smooth and glossy.*****

8. When the cake is glazed and glossed, place the fruits on top. To make the  sautéed plums, slice two plumbs into 6ths and  sauté in butter and sugar, let it cool. 

9. You can also pipe some chocolate buttercream around the edges if you're feeling fancy.

10. Et voila! You are ready to serve.


  1. It's been a while since I visited your blog..shame on me! Congrats on almost 100th post-I know the feeling, always exciting! Your cake look stunning, very delicious and beautifully decorated! Enjoy your week ahead!

  2. Beautiful cake Xinmei...I love the layers and the fruits on it...And congratulation on your 99th post...awesome!
    Hope you are having a wonderful week :)

  3. Happy blogging Xinmei! The cake looks absolutely mouthwatering!

  4. I love your cakes because they look so generous-spirited; much more attractive than a mirror shine.

  5. This looks to die for! Found you on an old post in the student room ha. hi from a fellow student blogger

  6. This looks absolutely stunning! :) Happy 99th post! Also, I’d like to invite you to come link up with me at my link party! I’d love it if you could stop by & link up some of your recipes! Here's the link:

  7. Love this cake - such pretty decoration too and all edible!


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