Unless you have nut allergy, you cannot possibly say no to a Ferrero Rocher. This decadent chocolate candy with its ‘creamy filling, crunchy wafer and delicious hazelnut centre’ makes a great gift for any chocolate lover. The idea of creating a Ferrero Rocher-themed cake came to me when I found myself with a bag of hazelnuts plus a few Ferreros, both dangerously close to their expiry date.

This is one bad habit of mine. I buy ingredients on whim, stash them in my cupboard, forget about them for a while, and then wonder what to make out of them when I come across them again. Next to pecan nuts, hazelnuts are my favourite kind of nut. The only moment when I’m not so much in love with them is when I have to get the skins of. The wonderful aroma released by freshly toasted hazelnuts fortunately makes up for the pain that goes into the skinning process. Well, they say that great pleasure comes only after great suffering!

FERRERO ROCHER CAKE

Ingredients:

For the Cake Batter

125 g butter, room temperature

100 g hazelnuts, skinned and toasted

1 cup all purpose flour

1/2 tsp baking powder

1/4 tsp table salt

2/3 cup caster sugar

3 eggs, separated

1/4 cup yogurt

For the Chocolate Ganache

1/2 cup heavy cream

100 g dark chocolate, chopped

6-8 Ferrero Rochers

Method:

  • Preheat oven to 350 oF. Grease and flour a 7-inch round baking pan or line base and sides with parchment paper.

  • Beat butter and sugar together in a large bowl until pale. Add egg yolks and yogurt, beat until well blended.

  • Carefully fold flour, baking powder, salt and lightly toasted hazelnuts into the butter mixture until just combined.

  • Whisk egg whites till they form stiff peaks in a separate bowl. Add a little to the hazelnut mixture to lighten it.

  • Fold in the remaining whipped egg white into the mixture with a metal spoon using careful swift strokes.

  • Pour batter into prepared pan and level surface with a palette knife. Bake for 45 mins until a skewer comes out clean.

  • Cool in pan for at least 15 minutes before turning out on a wire rack to cool completely to room temperature.

  • For the chocolate ganache, bring the cream to a boil in a heavy based saucepan. Remove from heat.

  • Stir in chopped chocolate until melted and bring the ganache to room temperature before pouring over the cake.

  • Leave to set for about 1/2 hour, then decorate with ferrero rochers and a dusting of cocoa powder. Serves 6.
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