Sponge Cake with Orange Flavored Whipped Cream and Chocolate Ganache
Today my son is coming home from college. He called me a couple of days ago and said: “Mom, I missed you all a lot and missed your food so badly! Don’t forget to make the stuffed grape leaves and zucchini (koussa wa warak inab) and my favorite sponge cake with orange flavored whipped cream!”
So I had to wake up before the crack of dawn to get everything done before his arrival, knowing that Hicham will appreciate that! This cake had always been one of his favorites since he was young and I had made it for him several times on his birthdays! The cake definitely evolves feelings of nostalgia in him! But still it is so tasty that I can hardly stop myself from having slice after slice! Now look at the picture! Need I say more?
For the cake:
21/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups sugar
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 cup milk
200g. / 7 oz. butter, softened
1 cup of canned pineapples, diced
For the filling
500ml/2 cups heavy cream
3 tablespoons sugar
2 drops of orange flavoring
For the chocolate ganache:
200g. /7 oz. semisweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon butter
Preheat the oven to 180°C/ 350°F. Place a rack in the center of the oven.
Butter and flour the sides and bottom of two round cake pans (22cm/9inches each).
In a large mixing bowl mix together the flour, sugar, vanilla extract and baking powder. Set aside.
In another bowl, pour the milk and add the eggs, stir with a fork just to incorporate the mixture. Set aside.
Scatter the butter chunks over the flour mixture. Use your fingertips to rub the butter into the flour until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs (There should be no large lumps).
Now, transfer the flour-butter mixture into a bowl of an electric mixer and add half of the milk mixture. With the mixer on low speed, beat for 10 seconds. Increase the speed to high and beat for another minute.
Pour the remaining milk mixture and beat for one more minute.
Divide the batter equally into the prepared pans. Smooth the top with a rubber spatula.
Bake for about 40 minutes or until you insert a skewer into the center of the cake and it comes out clean. Remove the cakes from the oven and set aside for 10 minutes.
Invert each cake to a plate and set aside to completely cool down.
Meanwhile, prepare the whipped cream:
Using an electric mixer whip the heavy cream, sugar and orange flavoring in a bowl until peaks form. Refrigerate directly.
Now for the chocolate ganache:
In a saucepan over medium heat, add the chocolate chunks, heavy cream, butter and sugar. Bring just to a boil. Stir to incorporate, ending up with a shiny chocolate glaze. Set aside to cool down.
To assemble the cake:
When the cakes have completely cooled down, spread the whipped cream evenly over the surface of one of the cakes. Place the second cake on top and drizzle the chocolate ganache evenly on top and around the edges of the cake.
The cake can be decorated with some pineapple chunks, optional.
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