I’ve been waiting for a ‘special’ event to post this elaborate recipe only because it is so fancy and delicious… and took me many many hours to get it right! And I don’t know if reaching a milestone counts as ‘special’ – but I’m super excited to hit the 10,000 subscribers mark on Facebook – exactly 6 months since its launch! So I guess this fancy cakey pudding pie justifies both – the Facebook page’s half year anniversary doubled with it joining the 10k subscribers league!
Coming up with names for a recipe is difficult. Take this dessert for example. It has layers of different forms of Chocolate. It has a layer of chocolate biscuit, a layer of cake, a layer of pudding & a layer of ganache; topped off with some Chocolate Shards. But I couldn’t possibly call this Chocolate Biscuity-Cakey-Puddingy-Ganche Pie could I? So I settled for the 2 main stars of the dessert – Chocolate Cake & Chocolate Pudding!
I made 2 versions of this dessert in December as a special treat for my mother’s tuition kids. One of the desserts disintegrated right before my eyes and there wasn’t anything I could do to save the chocolate river flowing out of the mold! But I cleverly renamed it as chocolate mud pie & served to the innocent kids… They lapped it up! The other one (thankfully) wasn’t a disaster. I shared a picture of the disaster-dessert on Facebook and wanted to know if people wanted to see it on my blog or not. To my surprise – most of them did. So I decided to post both the versions. One has chocolate whipped cream & the other doesn’t.
This isn’t a quick dessert. It takes hours of work and setting time. So don’t even think about making it on short notice! That being said, if you go step by step, it really isn’t all that difficult. Just because there are too many steps or it takes a long time doesn’t mean it is ‘difficult’.
So let’s start… I made this in a tart pan with detachable bottom. You could make it in a spingform pan too. Just make sure it is oven – proof. Detachable bottom is easy to just remove and serve directly.
This is a long recipe. For the proper recipe with amount of ingredients, (without step by step pictures) scroll down.
I. Biscuit Layer
Preheat oven to 200 C / 400 F
Melt butter. I did it in the Microwave.
Take the digestive biscuits in a mixing bowl
With you hand, a beater or a food processor, crush the biscuits to resemble crumbs
Add the melted butter in the biscuit crumbs
Mix well. It should resemble wet sand.
Grease your baking pan / tart pan well with butter or oil. Add the crumbs to the base. (the 2 pans in which I made)
Spread it out evenly and tightly on the base. Use the backside of a cup or ramekin to help you pack the crumbs tightly.
Bake @ 200 C for 10 minutes.
Remove and let it cool.
II. Cake Layer
As the biscuit layer is baking, you can make your cake batter. I used my trusted Chocolate Sponge Cake recipe (I halved the ingredients) for the chocolate cake layer. It is the best recipe ever! The cake stays soft & spongy even after hours of freezing!
Click here for a step by step pictorial of Chocolate Sponge Cake.
Once that has baked, let it cool completely before proceeding to the next step. Let it cool for at least 30 minutes
III. Pudding Layer
Once again, you can really make your own recipe for Chocolate Pudding. This just happens to be my go to recipe for Eggless Chocolate Pudding.
Reserve 1/2 cup of milk and mix cornstarch in it and set aside.
Add the remaining milk, cream and butter to a large pan. (Butter is optional. It just makes the pudding richer.)
Add the sugar and mix. On low heat, bring it up to a boil.
Add the cornstarch mixed with milk mixture to the cream & milk
Keep stirring continuously. You will notice the mixture starts to thicken. Keep stirring for around 3-4 minutes until it is thick enough to coat the back of the spoon.
Add in the chopped chocolate, a pinch of salt
Mix everything together well t avoid any lumps. Check for sweetness and add more sugar or honey if needed
Let it cool for about 5 minutes. Add a splash of Vanilla at the end and mix.
Pass it through a sieve if you feel there are lumps.
Pour the pudding on the cake up to almost the edge of the tart pan.
Place in the freezer for at least 5-6 hours or until completely set.
IV. Ganache Layer
Ganache is nothing but a mixture of cream and chocolate. I used by basic Chocolate Ganache Recipe to make this. (I used a mixture of dark & milk chocolate)
Click here for step by step pictures and recipe for making Chocolate Ganache
Once the pudding has set, pour a thin layer of Ganache on the tart pan evenly distributing all over.
Again freeze it for 2 hours at least or until the ganache sets.
V. Chocolate Whipped Cream (optional)
This is where I went wrong. I placed the whipped cream and poured hot ganache over it.. so it started loosening & no matter how much of refrigeration, it didn’t set. But it is exceptionally tasty. My advice is – pour the ganache first, let it set.. then decorate with whipped cream
Whip cream with electric or hand whisk until it forms soft peaks
Melt chocolate & let it cool a bit. (keep stirring)
Pour the cooled melted chocolate into the cream
Gently mix in in and chill until use.
Once the Ganache layer has set.. you can apply this cream on top – or not
This cannot be done in a tart because they wouldn’t be any place left. So if its a tart pan, serve this on the side.
I wanted to decorate the top with strawberries. But I changed my mind. Since every layer of the dessert is Chocolate, it felt absurd to deviate from the central theme. So, I made my trusted Chocolate Shards. They are the easiest Chocolate Decorations I have ever made!
Click here for step by step pictures on How to make Chocolate Shards.
Chill the shards until it is time to serve.
VI. Serving the dessert
Once the pudding and ganache have had time to set, carefully remove the bottom of the tart pan and place it on the serving plate.
It is important to note that puddings tend to melt faster than ganache. So it is advisable to keep the desert refrigerated at all times until you have to serve it.
Decorate the top however you like. I went for the messy Chocolate shards look!
Slice and serve!
I personally enjoyed the dessert. But one tiny slice was more than enough. I didn’t feel the need to smuggle another slice (like I always do). The layers of ganache, pudding, cake, biscuit along with the crunchy Shards made this a perfect festive dessert!
You don’t have to follow my recipe or make the exact same thing. But do try the idea of different layers of different kinds of dessert. It’s a lot of fun to make as well as eat!
- 15-20 Digestive Biscuits or Gram crackers (for 1 cup of crumbs)
- 2 TBsp Butter
- ½ cup All Purpose Flour (Maida)
- 2 TBsp Cocoa Powder
- ¼ cup Powdered Sugar (adjust according to taste)
- ½ cup plain Yogurt (curd)
- ¼ cup Vegetable Oil
- ½ tsp Baking Powder
- ½ tsp Baking Soda
- ½ tsp Vanilla Extract
- A pinch of Salt
- 1 cup Fresh Cream (half and half, heavy or anything you like)
- 1 cup Milk
- 1 TBsp Unsalted Butter
- 1 TBsp Cornstarch
- 1 cup Chopped Chocolate ( I used Dark)
- ¼ cup Powder Sugar (adjust according to taste)
- 1 tsp Vanilla Extract
- A pinch of salt * (Skip if using salted butter)
- 1 cup Cream (heavy or half and half or fresh)
- ½ cup Chopped Chocolate (I used milk chocolate)
- 1 TBsp Butter (preferably unsalted)
- ½ tsp Vanilla
- A pinch of salt (skip if using salted butter)
- 1 cup chilled Heavy Whipping Cream
- ½ cup chopped Milk & Dark Chocolate (or either one)
- 1 cup Chopped Chocolate (milk or dark or white)
- 2 sheets of Parchment Paper (a long rectangle)
- 9 inch Tart Pan with a removable bottom (preferably). OR
- Spring-Form Pan OR
- Any baking pan
- Butter or oil for greasing
- Other decorations as you want
- Aluminum Foil
- Grease your tart pan (or any baking pan you’re using) well with oil or butter.
- Cover the outside bottom of the pan with aluminum foil to make clean up easy and prevent any batter or biscuit coming out.
- Preheat oven at 200C / 400F
- Melt butter on a pan or microwave
- In a food processor or by hand, crush the biscuits to resemble crumbs.
- Add butter to the biscuit crumbs and mix well. It should resemble wet sand.
- Add the biscuit crumbs on the tart pan base and spread it evenly and tightly. Use the base of a cup or ramekin to guide you.
- Bake @ 200C/400F for 10 minutes. Let it cool completely.
- Preheat Oven at 160 C / 320 F
- Add the powdered sugar to yogurt and mix well.
- Add the baking powder, baking soda to the yogurt (curd); mix well & let it rest for 5 minutes until air bubbles start coming.
- Add the oil & vanilla to the curd mixture and mix well.
- Sift together the dry – flour, cocoa powder, salt. Add the mixture to the wet and mix well to avoid lumps.
- Pour the batter on the biscuit layer. (it should reach less than half of the baking pan) Bake @ 160C / 320F for 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. (It’ll take lesser time than a regular cake because we’re baking very less batter)
- Once it has baked, let it cool in the pan completely.
- Mix half of the milk with the corn flour
- Bring remaining milk, cream, butter to a boil on a deep pan.
- Add the cornstarch & milk mixture to the pan slowly while continuously stirring.
- Keep stirring till the mixture thickens well enough to coat the back of a spoon.
- Add in the chopped chocolate, pinch of salt and mix well. There should be no lumps.
- Add vanilla & mix well.
- Pour the pudding into the tart pan on top of the cake. (If there are lumps, pass it through a sieve) The mix should reach almost the top of the tart pan.
- Place in the freezer for 4-8 hours or until the pudding is completely set & hardened
- Bring cream & butter to a boil. Add the cream on chopped chocolate. Let chocolate sit in hot cream for 2 minutes
- Then gently stir in the chocolate into the cream to get a thick, glossy sauce.
- Add vanilla & a pinch pf salt & mix.
- Freeze for 2 hours or until Ganache has set well
- (If you’re making in a springform pan, also make a layer of this cream as it takes the dessert up a notch. If you’re making in a tart pan, there wont be a lot of place for the cream so skip it or serve it separately)
- Whip cream until soft peaks form
- Melt chocolate and let it cool
- Add cooled chocolate to the cream and mix.
- Apply it evenly on top of COOLED and SET ganache layer.
- Again refrigerate for 30 minutes at least.
- As the Ganache / Whipped Cream is setting, you can make your Chocolate Shards
- Melt the chocolate in microwave or over a double boiler.
- Spread the chocolate on a thin, even layer on one parchment paper.
- Place the other parchment paper on top of the chocolate.
- Roll the parchment papers together into a thin log.
- Let it rest for 10 minutes or freeze for 5 minutes.
- In a quick motion, un-roll the papers to get Chocolate Shards.
- Chill until its time to serve.
- Once the pudding & ganache have had time to set, gently remove the tart pan bottom and place on a serving plate. (If you’re making in a pan with no detachable bottom, you’ll have to manage to cut slices without removing the dessert from the pan.
- Decorate with Chocolate Shards or strawberries / whipped cream etc.
- Slice and Serve.