They say you can’t have all things nice at any given time and I do believe that’s true. Well, that should apply to dessert as well, shouldn’t it? What if I tell you that I know of the one dessert that defies this norm? What if I tell you that I can show you how to make a dessert that combines the goodness of vanilla sponge cake, the decadence of some velvety chocolate ganache, a boozy hit of Kahlua and that signature crunch of crackling crystal caramel? Isn’t that having all things wonderful at once? (To me, it is!) 😉
This dessert is simple, though it can take a while to put together. Where did I find the inspiration to create this Kahlua-Mocha Indulgence, you may ask? I am a huge fan of coffee (at a point in time, I was edging on addicted) and the idea of a dessert which is an amalgamation of any baker’s or confectioner’s favorite flavors was just too good to resist. Also, in spite of the fact that I am not a fan of alcohol, I do have a teeny thing for coffee liqueur. (It always makes me go – yayyyy Kahluaaa!) 😀
This is what you need:
For the Crystal Caramel:
- Sugar – 150 g
- Water – 2 tbsp
For the Vanilla Cake:
- Unsalted Butter – 150 g
- Sugar – 150 g
- Eggs – 2
- All Purpose Flour – 150 g
- Baking Powder – 1 tsp
- Vanilla Essence – 1 tsp
For the Chocolate Ganache:
- Heavy Whipping Cream (double cream) – 1 cup
- Light Brown Sugar – 1 cup
- Unsalted Butter – 2 tbsp
- Golden Syrup – 2 tbsp
- Milk – 1/2 cup
- Semi-sweet Chocolate – 200 g
- Kahlua or any kind of Coffee Liqueur – 1 and 1/2 cup
- A few deep-edged dessert bowls
Here’s how you make the Kahlua-Mocha Indulgence:
The crystal caramel:
- Mix the sugar and water in a deep dish. Place the dish on the cooking range on low heat.
- While the caramel is cooking, prepare the baking sheet by lining it with parchment paper.
- Once the sugar dissolves and the water has evaporated, the mixture will begin turning to a gold hue. When the mixture is of a light amber colour, take it off the heat.
- Pour the caramel on to the prepared baking sheet so as to form a thin layer.
- When the caramel cools completely and is hard to the touch, use the back of a spoon to crack it. Be careful while you’re at it, broken caramel can be as sharp as shattered glass.
- Pre-heat your oven to 170 degrees Celsius.
- In a bowl, blend sugar and butter until creamy. Add in the eggs and whisk well until light and fluffy.
- Add the flour and baking powder and fold in until well incorporated.
- Pour in the vanilla essence and give the batter one final mix.
- Pour the batter into a prepared 8-inch square baking tin and even out. Bake for about 17-20 minutes or until a skewer inserted comes out clean.
- Once the cake is completely cooled through, cut it into 2-inch squares.
- Place the heavy whipping cream, milk, sugar, butter and golden syrup in a heavy-based saucepan.
- Heat gently until the sugar has dissolved and the syrup has melted. Then bring to a boil. Boil, stirring continuously for about five minutes or until the sauce is thick.
- Remove from the heat and stir in the chocolate, a little at a time, until it is completely melted and the ganache is smooth and velvety.
Here’s how you assemble the Kahlua-Mocha Indulgence 😀
- In a dessert bowl, pour in a bit of Kahlua – about four teaspoons.
- Place a vanilla cake square in the bowl and top it off with another square of vanilla cake.
- Douse the cake in another two teaspoons of Kahlua.
- Pour the warm chocolate ganache over the cake tower until it’s dripping over on all sides.
- Sprinkle some crackling crystal caramel on the top and serve immediately.
One thing is for sure – if you’ve dug your teeth into this oh-so-amazing dessert, you’ve surely visited sweet-sweet heaven! The soft vanilla cake with its moist crumb, paired with the incredibly rich bitter-sweet chocolate ganache and the crystal caramel that lends an extraordinary bite to the dessert – not to mention the added sweetness and the smokey flavor -, is just taken to another level of drop-dead-delicious by the warmth and coffee-licious goodness of the Kahlua. Oh! My! God! (My taste buds yearn as I type this!)
I made this dessert for a dinner-date with the boyfriend and my, were we pleased! Being the first time tasting something like this, the both of us were supremely surprised at how wonderful this Kahlua-Mocha Indulgence tasted, and for days after, we craved for more! (The weighing scale didn’t think we deserved to eat more though…)
Trust me when I say that some of the simplest ingredients and techniques go into making this amazing dessert that is worthy of being served in some of the best restaurants and patisseries around the world! There goes another way to show your family and friends that you’re a culinary genius!
A little tip: If you’re not a fan of Kahlua or you don’t fancy alcohol, this dessert can be made without it as well. Just substitute Kahlua with some brewed strong black coffee (without sugar) and it will taste just as AWESOME!