I must of been around 8 the first time I tried out this recipe– In theory, it was fantastic, having an eight year old execute it? … well that was a disaster. Here’s take two.
I’ll never forget the day my mom came home with a recipe for a candy bar cake that she had clipped out of a women’s magazine at work. The picture was black and white and the recipe illegible– these obstacles didn’t stop the eight year old me from trying it out. I’ll never forget scrounging up all the money from my piggy bank and going to the store and spending achingly spend my ‘life savings’ on a couple bags of M&M’s and 10 Kit-Kat bars.
I went home, made the recipe, and needless to say, I blew it. Many years later, the trauma from having to throw out my blunder (whilst having an empty piggy) is still embedded; I think this time around, I redeemed myself. You’ll need to make this cake a day ahead, so the mousse has a chance to set nicely.
Kit-Kat and M&M’s Mousse Cake – aka Candy Bar Cake
(makes 2 x 6″ cakes; or 6 x 2″ cakes)
- 1 1/2 cup unsalted butter
- 2 1/2 cups white sugar
- 2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 6 large eggs
- 1 1/4 cup all-purpose flour, sifted
- 1 1/4 cup dutch process cocoa powder, sifted
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
Chocolate Mousse Layer:
- 500 g (2 cups) heavy cream; cold
- 250 g (~2 cups) semi-sweet chocolate; couverture is preferred, high quality chocolate is necessary.
- 50 g (1/4 cup) sugar
- 8 g gelatin sheets; bloomed in cold water
- 12 – mini Kit-Kat bars; I don’t recommend using the regular size as they are too tall, you end up using too much mousse, and an overall mess!
- 1, 42 oz bag of your favorite M&M’s
- sheet pan ( x 2)
- parchment paper
- 6″ spring form pan, or cake rings
- whisk/mixer for whipping cream
- double boiler/bain marie for melting chocolate and gelatin
- rubber spatulas
- cooking spray
- plastic wrap
Preheat oven to 350′F. Line one 9×9 inch baking pan with parchment paper and spray with cooking spray. In a saucepan over medium heat melt the butter, stir in the sugar and cocoa powder and mix until dissolved. Remove mixture from heat and beat in the eggs one at a time mixing well after each addition. Stir in the vanilla. Sift the flour and salt together. Add the flour mixture to the butter mixture, mixing until moistened.Spread the batter into the prepared pan and for 35 to 40 minutes, or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean. Remove from the oven, and allow to cool.
While the brownies are baking, prepare the cake rings: line a sheet pan with parchment paper, and place the rings on top of the sheet pan. Cut a strip of parchment that is the height and diameter of the cake ring, and line the inside of the cake ring. Line the mini Kit-Kat bars along the inside of the cake ring, making sure there are no gaps– they need to sit flush against each other. Set aside.
Chocolate Mousse Layer:
Whip the heavy cream and sugar to medium peaks, set aside. Bloom the gelatin sheets in ice-cold water. Blooming softens the gelatin sheet– it needs to be wrang out of excess water and disolved before you use it. If you are unsure how to use gelatin, David Lebovitz provides a great tutorial. While the gelatin blooms, melt the chocolate over a double-boiler, stirring often– once melted, set aside. Dissolve the gelatin over a double boiler, until it is a liquid, and add it to the chocolate stirring vigorously; it will begin to harden, but keep mixing. Add 1/4 of the whip cream to the chocolate and gelatin mixture, and mix until combined and homogenous. Fold in the remaining whip cream until you have a smooth and velvety whip cream. Always fold a mousse, you don’t want to lose too much of the volume.
Assembling the cake:
Cut a 5 1/2″ diameter circle from the brownie base, and fit it inside of the cake ring. Make sure that your brownie is fitted all the way to the edge of the Kit-Kat bars– you might need to force excess brownie scraps around the edges to fill in any gaps. Pour the mousse on top of the brownie base filling the cake 90% of the way. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 8 hours, or until the mousse sets. Garnish with M&M’s, cover, and return to the fridge until ready to consume.
Same steps apply for the small 2″ dia. cakes– you just use smaller cake rings.