Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Pine Nut Turron Cake (CWF)

This month's Chocolate With Francois recipe was chosen by Joanne of Apple Crumbles and was the first recipe that for me involved unfamiliar ingredients and techniques. I think I'm beginning to understand that Mr. Payard is going to be quite a bit about presentation in many of his recipes.

Pine nut turron is a three layer chocolate dessert built upside down on an acetate sheet enabling the finished cake to boast a smooth and shiny chocolate topping when the cake is inverted before serving.

Sacher cake, a jelly-roll type cake made from eggs, cocoa, almond flour and a little bit of sugar, ends up being the bottom layer. Then toasted pine nuts are processed to a paste and added to melted chocolate to form a creamy middle layer. The top layer is a thin, intense dark chocolate coating that is intended to give the dessert its show stopping appeal.

Since I felt there must be an importance to the smoothness of this top layer, I spent some time looking for the acetate in office supply stores. The 5"X15" specification eliminated anything already precut into the standard size sheets available, so I ended up ordering a large sheet from an online art supply store. I then cut it to the size needed and saved the rest for future fussy recipes. If you find yourself in need of pine nut turron cake for say a wedding reception for 500 people, I have enough acetate to do the job for you.

While I really enjoyed the final product, for the amount of work involved, it didn't live up to my expectations. As I stated earlier, I think this might be one of those recipes that's meant to be more about presentation than actual flavor. If I were to attempt this recipe again, I'd eliminate part of the time factor by substituting peanut butter for the pine nut puree and I'd definitely find a different cake recipe. I wasn't all that impressed with the flavor or texture of the Sacher cake.

All in all this was an interesting recipe and new techniques were learned in the making. I always love a challenge and this dessert definitely provided that for me.

You'll find the recipe for pine nut turron cake posted on Apple Crumbles. Thanks Joanne, for choosing a really unique and challenging recipe!

21 comments:

June said...

This looks beautiful Mags - your photo's are amazing! I'm sorry you were disappointed in the flavor, but man - it looks INCREDIBLY edible.

Moogie said...

Okay, first of all, holy crapola, is today the 30th? I haven't made my dessert yet.

But I must say that I am quite impressed with chocolate skills. Great job!!

Megan said...

It looks great anyways! I wish you had something better to say about it. I've bought all the ingredients and something that should work in place of acetate... and I'm making it tonight. I'm contemplating making a simple syrup or something to soak the sacher cake... would that help, do you think?

Linda said...

Yours looks really good!

I agree with you about the pine nut layer. I like pine nuts but something about this just didn't do it for me.

Rosemary & Garlic said...

Mags, that is amazing, too bad it looked better than it tasted. It is beautiful.

Pam said...

I'm sorry it didn't live up to your expectations, but I have to say that is one gorgeous cake!

sweetjeanette said...

Nothing wrong with subbing peanut butter!!! LOL Well, it really does look delish!

sweetjeanette.blogspot.com

Karen said...

Such a beautiful dessert. Might be fun to make it again sometime with your own little twists!

Mags said...

June: Thanks. It wasn't terrible, I just expected more, I think.

Moogie: Yeah, you need to get busy girl!

Megan: The sacher cake reminds me of a chocolate angel food cake and I think it would disintegrate with a syrup. Good luck!

Linda: I definitely like peanut butter better than pinenut butter.

Rosemary: Thanks!

Pam: Thank you for commenting!

Karen: I agree, if tweaked it might be a very delicious AND beautiful dessert.

Mags said...

sweetjeanette: Thanks! And thanks for stopping by and commenting.

lakegirl said...

Mags - Your cake is beautiful! Sorry you were disappointed in the cake.

I passed on this one, the 15+ inches of snow has my schedule a bit messed up.

Happy New Year!

Mags said...

Julie: Wish you could have made this along with the rest of us, but I understand that the weather dictates all. Happy New Year!

ivorypomegranate said...

Wow! That's a little disappointing about the flavors, but seriously, the presentation is beautiful! Maybe I'll brave this recipe one day and use some of your suggestions. Thank you!

Carolyn Jung said...

That is a true work of art! So smooth and silky looking. I bet it just melts in your mouth.

AppleC said...

Great idea about peanut butter. It had little flavor and was a disappointment.
But I did enjoy learning about the use of acetate and the addition of cocoa butter. Interesting.
Great job - great photos and thanks 1000 for baking along w/ me this month.

Megan said...

I'm bummed you didnt like the cake. I thought, when I saw the pics, that I was so gonna make this. But after reading you idnt care for finished product, I wont waste the time or ingredients. It is awfully pretty though!

Tartelette said...

Looks and sounds delicious!
I don't keep acetate around anymore and when I have a recipe that calls for some I substitute with office plastic protecting sleeves for documents. Works the same and like a charm!

Jane said...

Wow, Mags! Taste aside, this is some gorgeous dessert!

Sweet and Savory said...

For such a beautiful cake and your certainly is, it is a shame that it wasn't more exciting in taste. I love your attitude though about the challenge.

Susan said...

Your cake looks fabulous! Wonderful photos! I had never tried pine nuts until this recipe. Probably won't try them again any time soon. :)

Denise said...

Go Bucks!!! I'm assuming you watched the Rose Bowl game today???