This stunning cake is easy to make and will impress guests at your next gathering.
For the cake batter, preheat grill in oven. Beat yolks on high speed in mixer until pale and creamy. Set aside. Separately, beat butter and sugar until pale and creamy, then beat in zest and vanilla. Add the yolks and mix well. Add flour and cornstarch and mix to a batter. Separately, whisk egg whites to soft peaks, use a third to thin the batter then fold the rest into the batter. Warm the apricot jam and sieve. Grease and line a 24cm springform pan, and a 15cm spring form pan. Cover the bases with baking paper. With the 24cm pan, spread a 1/3 cup of batter evenly around with a brush then place under the grill for 2 minutes until golden. Remove, repeat the spread with another 1/3 cup and grill for 3 minutes until darker brown. Repeat process, with every 5th layer having a thin amount of apricot jam spread over and baked for 2-3 minutes before the 6th batter layer. Repeat process until 20 layers have been made. Cool, cover with a thin layer of apricot jam, cover with glaze, decorate with chocolate bark. Repeat entire process with smaller cake tin, and stack on top of larger cake to create two tiers.
For the chocolate glaze, bring the water, cream, sugar and cocoa powder to the boil until it reaches 106°C. Cool to 60°C and add gelatin. Use at 30°C to cover cakes.
For chocolate bark, temper dark chocolate – heat ¾ chocolate on double boiler to 55°C. Cool using seeding method to 28-29°C, stirring constantly, then bring back up to 30C before spreading on acetate and cooling. Texturize with utensils to appear like bark. Once cool, remove from acetate and use to decorate cakes.
Decorations use fondant to make small branches and leaves to decorate cake to appear tree-like.
This recipe has not been edited or tested by the Bake Off Food Department
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