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Gaston Lenôtre created this dessert as a tribute to the legendary Concorde aircraft in the 70's, back when he was designing menus for Air France passengers. Concorde Cake is a combination of layers of chocolate meringue and chocolate mousse, which together create a delightfully decadent dessert!
Before starting this Gâteau Concorde by Lenôtre, organise the necessary ingredients for the chocolate meringue.
For the chocolate meringue: In a mixing bowl, sift the cocoa powder and icing sugar, using a fine sieve.
Tap the edge of the sieve with a spatula to facilitate the sifting process. Set aside.
Place the matured egg whites (ideally at room temperature) in the stand mixer recipient.
Beat the egg whites and add the sugar in two or three batches.
Continue beating the egg whites...
... until stiff.
Add the sifted ingredients (cocoa powder and icing sugar)...
... and fold gently, using a rubber spatula...
... until homogeneous.
Transfer the chocolate meringue into a piping bag and set aside.
Cut two sheets of greaseproof paper to 40 x 30 cm. Using a pencil, draw three discs with a diameter of 18 cm.
Flip the greaseproof paper sheets so the drawn circles are facing down. Pipe the meringue in a spiral shape, using the pencil marks as a guide.
Pipe laces of chocolate meringue over the space left around the discs...
This is what the cake should look like.
Dip the blade of a knife in clarified butter...
... and cut the chocolate meringue laces into segments of 2 cm with the greased blade.
Bake in a fan-assisted oven at 110/120°C (gas 1/2) for 1 hour. When cooked, remove from the oven and leave to cool at room temperature.
For the chocolate mousse: Organise all the necessary ingredients.
Place the chocolate pistoles in a bowl.
Bring 170 grams of whipping cream to a boil in a saucepan...
... and pour over the chocolate. Let the chocolate melt in the hot cream for a minute without stirring.
Combine with a whisk to create an emulsion...
... until smooth and homogeneous.
Beat 340 grams of whipping cream until you obtain a soft whipped cream.
Add the whipped cream to the chocolate preparation which shouldn't exceed 45°C.
Add 1/3 of the whipped cream first and combine gently.
Pour the preparation over the remaining whipped cream...
... and combine carefully with the spatula until homogeneous.
When the chocolate meringue discs are cooked, trim them using a mousse ring Ø 18cm and a serrated knife.
The trimmed discs should look like this.
Place a mousse ring on a baking sheet. Place a cake board (same diameter) at the bottom of the ring. Line the inside of the ring with a strip of acetate cut to a height of 6 cm.
Place a chocolate meringue disc at the bottom of the ring, with the flat side facing down.
Place 185 grams of chocolate mousse over the meringue...
... and spread with a small cranked spatula to a regular thickness.
Place a second disc of biscuit over the chocolate mousse. Making sure not to break it, press on the biscuit gently to remove any air bubbles.
Add 185 grams of chocolate mousse over the meringue disc...
... and spread evenly with the small spatula.
Place the third meringue disc on top, with the flat side facing up.
Press on the meringue gently while rotating it a little. Chocolate mousse should come up a little around the sides.
Spread chocolate mousse over the biscuit to cover it.
Place the cake on top of a mousse ring with a smaller diameter (14 or 16 cm). Gently slide the ring downwards to release the cake.
The result should be as shown in the photo. Refrigerate.
Cut the meringue sausage shapes into portions of 2 cm. The pre-cuts we made at step #17 should make this operation a lot easier.
When the cake has cooled down, take it out of the fridge and remove the acetate strip. Even the sides with a spatula.
Arrange the chocolate meringue decorations over the sides of the cake, creating three rows...
... making sure they are properly lined up.
This is what the result should look like.
Reserve in the fridge.
Tempering the chocolate: Prepare all the ingredients for the tempering technique with Mycryo.
Pour the tempered chocolate on your worktop surface (preferable marble or granite).
Spread with a to a thin layer of 2 mm with a large metallic cranked spatula.
After a few minutes (depending of the temperature in your room), the chocolate should start to crystallize.
You can clearly see the crystallization in the photo. At this stage, we can start making our chocolate shavings.
Using a chocolate spatula, scrape the chocolate into small rolls. The surface is dry but the chocolate should still have a soft texture.
Continue having the chocolate while it is still soft.
The chocolate shavings are now ready.
Choose the best looking ones, ideally with a length of about 4 cm.
Arrange the chocolate shavings over the surface of the cake, in the shape of a swirl.
Arrange a small row of chocolate shavings in the centre, then cover with a smaller swirl on top.
This is what the result should look like.
Using a shaker, sprinkle Codineige sugar over the surface. Codineige is a moisture-resistant decorating sugar, so it won't melt in the fridge. If you're using regular icing sugar, drizzle at the very last minute before serving.
Our gorgeous Gâteau Concorde is now ready. Enjoy!
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