A Dacquoise is a kind of dessert cake made with layers of almond or hazelnut meringue, filled with pastry cream, buttercream or whipped cream and topped with seasonal fruits. The texture of this classic french cake is soft and creamy, crisp and crunchy and will satisfy everyone. It will take some time to prepare this heavenly dessert but it is worth it.
Preparation for a 24 cm diameter cake ring
For the meringue cakes:
Preheat the oven to 180° C
- 225 g whole hazelnuts
- 130 g confectioners sugar
- 6 egg whites
- 60 g sugar
Spread 100 g of the hazelnuts on the baking tray and bake for 10 to 15 minutes, The nuts are ready when they are golden in color.
Remove the pan from the oven, let the nuts cool completely and roughly chop the hazelnuts.
Finely grind the remaining 125 g hazelnuts with the confectioners sugar and mix it with the toasted hazelnuts, then set aside.
Place the egg whites and a pinch of sugar in a bowl and beat on medium speed, until frothy.
Add the remaining sugar, one-third at a time. Let each amount clear before adding the next. Continue mixing on medium speed for a stronger and more developed meringue.
Gently fold in the nuts and sugar mixture until just combined.
Spread the meringue mixture into approximately 26 cm-diameter circles on two paper-lined, baking trays and bake each base for about 20 minutes.
Remove the baking trays from the oven and let the meringue cakes cool completely.
Cut the edges of both of the meringue cakes away in the size of the cake ring. Set the cakes aside until ready to use.
For the pastry cream:
- 2 gelatine leaves
- 250 g white chocolate, chopped
- 2,5 dl milk
- 1 vanilla pod
- 2 egg yolks
- 3 tablespoon Grand Marnier (a orange-flavored brandy liqueur)
- 4 dl whipping cream
Soak the gelatin leaves into cold water until they are soft, then wring the gelatin gently to remove excess water, and add it to the chopped, white chocolate.
Put the scraped vanilla pod and the milk the in a pan over low heat and bring the mixture to boil, then remove the milk from heat.
Than stir in the egg yolks in the hot milk very slowly and set the pan over low heat and bring the mixture to boil until the milk-egg mixture it thickened.
Pour the cream through a sieve over the white chocolate. Let the chocolate begin to melt and then stir it gently with a spatula. When the mixture has a smooth texture add the Grand Marnier.
Cool the chocolate mixture to room temperature.
In the meantime beat the whipping cream until stiff and pour it gently into the cooled chocolate mixture and set aside until ready to use.
For the fruit mixture:
- 200 g raspberries
- 150 g cherries, stoned
- 150 g blueberries
Cut the raspberries and the cherries in halves or quarters.
To assemble the Dacquoise:
On a serving plate place the cake ring firmly in the center of a baking sheet. (Make sure your freezer is big enough for the serving plate)
Arrange the fruits on the bottom of the baking sheet.
Pour two-thirds of the pastry cream over the fruits and smooth the cream out with a palette knife.
Then lay the first meringue cake down onto the pastry cream, pour the rest of the cream over it and smooth the cream out with a palette knife. Then lay the second cake layer down onto the pastry cream.
Put the cake in the freezer for at least 2 hours.
Remove the cake from the freezer.
Run a round-bladed knife around the sides of the cake pan to loosen any stuck edges.
Place a serving plate on top of the cake and carefully flip over, so that the fruits are facing up.