Birthday Cake for my Nutella-loving boy!
I still remember my first Nutella encounter, do you? We were visiting Zia in Sydney and I was stunned by two things. The fact that Mark and Anthony were allowed to sprinkle Milo on top of their cornflakes, and Nutella. Who knew that you could eat so much chocolate so early in the day?? Nutella did not make a regular appearance in my life until we had our own boys. And then mostly it was a special treat hidden in the depths of the pantry to be pulled out as an icing on a last minute chocolate cake. That shows my age right there – the fact that you used to be able to take something with nuts to school. So when I first saw the recipe for Nigella’s Nutella Cake, I was fairly sure that it would be a hit in this house. Rich moist and decadently chocolatey, the Nutella Cake became TM’s favourite birthday cake. So when he turned 21 recently, Nutella Cake it was.
Where did the time go? How did another of my babies reach the milestone of 21? TM was always such a cheeky boy, and was the child who tested both the public hospital response and the generosity of our private health fund – mothers of boys will know there is always one! And he has a sweet tooth. Not just chocolate and Nutella (and none of that cheaper brand stuff for TM!) but peanut butter as well. There was another cake with peanut butter frosting, but it was not my favourite, so I’m not going to share. (Plus – the chocolate cake had three layers and a lot of frosting, so took on a Leaning Tower look)
So to the Nutella Cake. Preheat the oven to 180°C and grease and line a 25 cm springform tin (lining with baking paper is not essential but makes cleaning up easier!). Take your egg whites, add a pinch of salt and beat until stiff but not dry. Set aside.
Add Frangelico, egg yolks and ground hazelnuts.
Well worth purchasing the Frangelico – it is a delicious hazelnut liqueur. I use it to soak strawberries in with just a little icing sugar – served with some good vanilla ice-cream, this is the best and easiest dessert ever!
Melt chocolate (double boiler or in microwave – the choice is yours. As I am a control freak, I tend to stir in a bowl over boiling water – melts quickly and smoothly and easy to scrape all the chocolate out. Fold chocolate through the Nutella mixture.
Fold in 1/3 of the egg whites, then gently incorporate the rest of the egg whites into the mixture until just combined. Pour into prepared pan.
Pop into the oven for 40 minutes. Please don’t be tempted to over cook this cake. Check at 40 minutes and if the centre is still goopy, perhaps another 5 minutes. We are going to cool the cake in the tin so it will continue to cook a little from the residual heat. Just pop it aside and let it be.
Place 100ml of cream with 100 g of dark chocolate and a dash of Frangelico in a small saucepan. Stir over low heat until melted. Cool slightly then pour over cake.
I decorated YM’s cake with chocolate hazelnut wafers (bought at the supermarket) and topped those with strawberries that had soaked in Frangelico – divine! Of course served with some good vanilla icecream.
Hope you find a reason to celebrate or treat yourself with this cake soon.
- 6 large eggs, separated
- pinch salt
- 125 g unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 400g Nutella
- 1 tbs Frangelico
- 100g ground hazelnuts
- 100g dark chocolate, melted
- 100g dark chocolate, extra
- 100 ml cream
- 1 tbs frangelico
- Whisk egg whites until stiff but not dry. Set aside
- In a separate bowl, beat butter and Nutella until well combined and fluffy. Add Frangelico, egg yolks and ground hazelnuts. Fold in melted chocolate.
- Fold in egg whites, ⅓ at a time until just incorporated.
- Pour into a greased and lined 25 cm springform tin.
- Bake in a preheated 180°C oven for 40 minutes. Cool in tin
- For ganache:
- In a small pan over low heat, stir chocolate cream and Frangelico until smooth. Cool slightly then pour over cool cake