1 1/3 cups milk, divided
1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise, or 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/3 cup granulated sugar
2 tablespoons cornstarch
3 large egg yolks
2 tablespoons (1/4 stick/1 oz/28g) butter or margarine, cut up
2 cups cake flour (not self-rising)
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup (1 stick/4 oz/113g) butter or margarine, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
2 large eggs, at room temperature
3/4 cup milk, at room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 cup heavy or whipping cream
1 teaspoon instant coffee powder
4 ounces semisweet chocolate squares, finely chopped
1 tablespoon light corn syrup
1/4 cup confectioners' sugar, sifted
1. TO MAKE CUSTARD:
Combine 1 cup milk and vanilla bean in a microwave safe bowl. Microwave on High 1 minute, until milk is hot. Whisk sugar and cornstarch in a 2-quart saucepan until blended. Whisk in remaining 1/3 cup milk and egg yolks until smooth. Remove vanilla beans from milk and scrape seeds into mixture in saucepan (discard bean); gradually whisk in hot milk. Cook custard over medium-low heat, whisking gently until it comes to a full boil. Reduce heat and boil for 1 minute, whisking gently. Remove from heat and stir (not whisk) in butter until melted. Strain custard through a sieve into a medium bowl. (Stir in vanilla extract, if using.) Cover surface directly with plastic wrap. Refrigerate 2 hours until cold. (Can be made ahead. Refrigerate overnight. To proceed with recipe, stir custard until smooth.)
2. TO MAKE CAKE:
Preheat oven to 350 degree F/180 degrees C. Grease and flour a 9-inch springform pan. Whisk flour, baking powder, and salt in a bowl until blended. Beat butter in a large mixer bowl until softened, about 1 minute. Gradually beat in sugar, then beat 4 to 5 minutes, until fluffy. At low speed, beat in eggs one at a time until well blended. Combine milk and vanilla in glass measure. Alternately beat in flour mixture with milk mixture, beginning and ending with flour mixture, beating just until blended. Spread batter evenly into prepared pan.
3. Bake 35 to 40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in center of cake comes out clean. Cool cake in pan 10 minutes. Run a knife around side of pan and detach springform ring. Invert cake onto a wire rack. Remove pan bottom and invert cake gain onto rack. Cool. (Can be made ahead. Wrap well and freeze up to two weeks. Thaw at room temperature 2 hours.)
4.TO MAKE GLAZE:
Bring cream and instant coffee to a boil in a 1-quart saucepan. Remove pan from heat; add chocolate. Cover and let stand 1 minute. Whisk until chocolate melts. Add corn syrup and confectioners' sugar; whisk until smooth. (If there are any lumps of sugar remaining, let stand a few minutes and whisk again.) Let stand 10 minutes to cool.
5.TO ASSEMBLE CAKE:
Split cake in half horizontally with a long serrated knife. Remove top. Place bottom layer on a cake stand or serving plate. Spoon chilled custard onto bottom layer and spread up to 1/2 inch from edge. Top with remaining cake layer, cut side down. Spoon glaze onto center of cake. Spread evenly on cake, letting some run down sides. Let stand until glaze firms up, about 30 minutes.
Makes 12 servings.
Source: Ladies Home Journal
Date: June 8, 2002