If you’re a fan of hazelnuts and chocolate, then this is THE cake for you. Three layers of fudgy, rich chocolate cake, creamy Nutella frosting, a delicious hazelnut chocolate ganache, chopped hazelnuts AND Ferrero Rocher chocolates to top it all off…
If you’re looking for a showstopper dessert this holiday season, then look no further!
300g self-raising flour
225g caster sugar
225g light brown sugar
100g cocoa powder
1tsp baking powder
1 ½ tsp baking soda
1tsp ground coffee
125ml vegetable oil
2 large eggs (room temperature)
2 tsp vanilla extract
175ml boiling water
75ml hazelnut syrup
250g unsalted butter
600g icing sugar (confectioner’s sugar)
100g cocoa powder
2tsp vanilla extract
75ml double cream
100g milk chocolate
175ml double cream
25ml hazelnut syrup
10 Ferrero Rocher chocolates
- Preheat your oven to 170°C (340°F, gas mark 5). Grease and line the bottom of three 8-inch loose-base cake tins. Add roughly a tablespoon of cocoa powder to the tin and gently shake it around so that it sticks to the greased sides, then tip out any excess.
- Sift all of the dry ingredients into a large bowl and whisk thoroughly. Next, add the buttermilk, oil, eggs, vanilla and syrup, and whisk again. This should result in a thick, chocolatey paste. Slowly pour in the boiling water and whisk until the mixture is lovely and glossy.
- Divide the batter equally between the three prepared tins and bake for 30-35 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the centre of the cake comes out clean. Remove from the oven and allow the cakes to cool for 10 minutes in their tins before transferring to a wire rack. They should lift out pretty easily, but run a palette knife round the edge to give them a helping hand if you need to.
- While the cakes are cooling, make a start on your buttercream. Using a stand mixer or hand-held mixer, beat the butter on a medium speed for 5 minutes until it goes pale and gains some volume. You may need to stop your mixer and scrape down the bowl a couple of times. Sift in your half of the cocoa powder and icing sugar one to two tablespoons at a time and fold into the butter using a spatula, before switching to your mixer on a low speed to fully combine. Add the Nutella and double cream, followed by the rest of the cocoa powder and icing sugar. Once you’ve reached the desired consistency, add your vanilla extract and mix on a low speed for another minute until your buttercream is light and fluffy.
- Once the cakes have cooled, use a bread knife or cake wire to make them level. Spread a little buttercream on a 10-inch cake board and add your first cake. Add a layer of buttercream and repeat with the other layers. Cover the cake with a thin layer of buttercream (aka a crumb coat) and put in the freezer for 20 minutes.
- After 20 minutes, take the cake out of the freezer and place the board onto a decorating turntable – this will make it much easier to spread your buttercream around your cake. Cover the cake in buttercream and smooth round. You should have some buttercream leftover – set that aside, as you’ll need this a little later. Spoon the chopped hazelnuts onto the cake board and press into the buttercream around the bottom of the cake, around one inch or so. Put your cake back in the freezer for another 15 minutes.
- Now it’s time to make your ganache. Pour the cream into a heatproof jug and heat in the microwave for around 45 seconds. Add the milk chocolate and hazelnut syrup to the hot cream and stir until the chocolate is melted. Pop the ganache in the fridge until your cake is ready to come out.
- Pour your ganache into a piping bag and snip a little bit off the end. With your cake on the turntable, squeeze the piping bag gently around the edge of the cake so that the chocolate falls, creating drips. Continue around the whole cake, filling any big gaps, then fill in the centre. Smooth the ganache on top of the cake using a palette knife.
- To finish off the decoration on your cake, fit a piping bag with your favourite piping nozzle, fill with the remaining chocolate buttercream and pipe blobs around the top edge of the cake. Space the Ferrero Rocher chocolates around the top of the cake, sprinkle a few chopped hazelnuts over the top and serve!
Will you be making this for your family at Christmas? Let me know in the comments!