Walnut Whip Cake
Perfect for a birthday or celebration, this walnut whip layer cake takes all the elements of a walnut whip and turns them into a delectable dessert
- FOR THE CAKE
- 100 g (3 ½oz) walnut pieces
- 200 g (7oz) unsalted butter, softened
- 200 g (7oz) caster sugar
- 4 medium eggs, beaten
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- 200 g (7oz) self-raising flour
- ½ tsp baking powder
- 150 g (5oz) milk chocolate chips
- 1 tbsp. milk
- FOR THE GANACHE
- 200g (7oz) dark chocolate, at least 70% cocoa solids
- 200 ml (7 fl oz (⅓ pint)) double cream
- FOR THE MARSHMALLOW ICING
- 200g (7oz) unsalted butter, softened
- 225g (8oz) icing sugar
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- 1 x 213g tub marshmallow fluff
- 1-2 tbsp milk, optional
- TO DECORATE
- 3 chocolate vanilla whips, halved
- 15g (1/2oz) walnut pieces, roughly chopped
- Preheat the oven to 180°C (160°C fan) mark 4. Grease and line the bases of two 20.5cm (8in) loose bottomed cake tins with baking parchment. Whiz the walnuts in a food processor until finely chopped.
- In a large bowl, beat the butter and sugar together using a handheld electric whisk, until pale and fluffy. Add the eggs a little at a time, whisking well in between each addition. Whisk in the vanilla. Fold in the ground walnuts, flour, baking powder, chocolate chips and a pinch of salt. Add the milk to loosen, if needed.
- Divide evenly between the prepared tins and bake for 25-30min, until golden and risen and a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean. Leave to cool in the tins for 15min, then remove from tins on to a wire rack to cool completely. Peel off the parchment.
- While the cake bakes, make the ganache. Roughly chop the chocolate and tip into a large heatproof bowl. Heat the cream in a pan until just bubbling around the edges. Remove from the heat and immediately pour it over the chopped chocolate. Leave for 2-3min without stirring to allow the chocolate to melt, then stir until the mixture is smooth and glossy. Allow to cool for 1hr or until thick and spreadable.
- Make the marshmallow icing. In a large bowl, beat the butter using a handheld electric whisk until very soft. Add the icing sugar a little at a time until fully combined. Beat in the vanilla, marshmallow fluff and a pinch of salt. Add milk to loosen, if needed.
- Put a cake on to a serving plate. Beat the ganache briefly with a spoon to loosen it if slightly set, then spread two thirds over the top of the cake in an even layer. Put the remaining cake on top.
- Spread a very thin, even layer of marshmallow icing over the top and sides of the cake to seal in the crumbs. Chill for 30min, or until set solid, then spread the remaining icing over the top and sides in a thick, even layer.
- Stand the bowl with the remaining chocolate ganache in a larger bowl of hot tap water and stir until runny. Spread over the top of the cake, allowing the ganache to drip down the sides, then decorate the top with the chopped walnuts and chocolate vanilla whips. Leave to set, then serve in slices.