Sugar Peony and a Chocolate and Pistachio Brigadeiro Cake







Last week I was checking some photo albums on my computer when I found pictures of peonies that I bought last spring. Looking at the photos, I remembered the time I was living in England. I was fortunate to have a peony on my house's garden. Better then that! At every corner of my neighborhood, there was a garden with a lot of peonies of every color and shape. Can you imagine my happiness? 





So, inspired by my photos and that magical spring in England, I decided to try my first sugar peony. I have to tell you that this pink peony was the hardest flower I've ever made. I took some time to figure out how to shape the petals to look like the real one.





After making the flower, I started to think about the cake flavor and a combination of chocolate and pistachio came to my mind. So I prepared two different sponge cakes (dark chocolate and pistachio), two different brigadeiro as filling (dark chocolate and pistachio, again) and dark chocolate ganache as frosting.  This is a delicious cake for any occasion and celebration.



Chocolate and Pistachio Brigadeiro Cake
(From Lulu's Sweet Secrets)

Dark Chocolate Cake
Makes two 6-in round cake

200g unsalted butter, room temperature
175g granulated sugar
225g all-purpose flour, sifted
1 teaspoon baking powder
4 whole large eggs, room temperature
135ml whole milk
200g dark chocolate, chopped

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and line the base of 2 round 6-in cake pans. Place the butter and sugar in a stand mixer bowl and beat with the paddle attachment until fluffy. Add the eggs one by one. Meanwhile, heat the milk in a saucepan over medium heat. Bring just to a boil and then add the dark chocolate. Whisk until smooth. Place the chocolate and milk mixture over the eggs and sugar cream and beat for a minute. Fold in the flour and baking powder with a rubber spoon until just incorporated (don't overmix).  Bake for 40 minutes or until risen and just firm to the touch. Transfer to a wire rack to cool.



Pistachio Cake
Makes two 6-in round cake

200g unsalted butter, room temperature
200g granulated sugar
170g all-purpose flour, sifted
60g ground pistachios
2 tablespoons Bronte Pistachio Cream
4 whole large eggs, room temperature


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and line the base of 2 round 6-in cake pans. Place the butter and sugar in a stand mixer bowl and beat with the paddle attachment until fluffy. Add the pistachio cream and beat for a minute. Add the eggs one by one and beat until well incorporated. Fold in the flour and ground pistachios with a rubber spoon until just incorporated (don't overmix).  Bake for 40 minutes or until risen and just firm to the touch. Transfer to a wire rack to cool.



Dark Chocolate Brigadeiro Filling

1 can sweetened condensed milk
2 tablespoon unsalted butter
100g dark chocolate

Place all the ingredients into a medium saucepan. Over low heat, stir the mixture until thick consistency or it starts to show the bottom of the pan while you scrape it with a spoon (about 15 min).  Transfer to a greased bowl to cool. 

Pistachio Brigadeiro Filling

1/2 can sweetened condensed milk
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1 tablespoon  Bronte Pistachio Cream
30g ground pistachios

Place all the ingredients into a medium saucepan. Over low heat, stir the mixture until thick consistency or it starts to show the bottom of the pan while you scrape it with a spoon (about 15 min).  Transfer to a greased bowl to cool




Dark Chocolate Ganache

18 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped
2 cups heavy cream

Bring cream just to a boil in a small saucepan. Remove from heat, add chocolate, stand until melted (5 minutes), stir until smooth and glossy. Refrigerate until firm yet still pliable (45 minutes-1 hour) then stir until smooth.



Assembly

Place one chocolate cake on a serving plate. Spread half recipe chocolate brigadeiro over top. Place the pistachio cake on top. Spread the pistachio brigadeiro over top. Repeat the chocolate cake and chocolate brigadeiro.  Top with remaining pistachio cake. Cover with chocolate ganache.