Chocolate Bavarian Cream Filling

Preparation info

  • Difficulty

    Medium

  • Makes

    4½ cups

Appears in

The Baking Bible

By Rose Levy Beranbaum

Published 2014

  • About

Ingredients

VOLUME WEIGHT
dark chocolate, 60% to 62% cacao, chopped . 4.5 ounces 128 grams
heavy cream, cold cup (158 ml) 5.5 ounces 155 grams
3 (to 4) large eggs, separated, at room temperature
yolks tablespoons (52 ml) 2 ounces 56 grams
whites ¼ cup (59 ml) 2.1 ounces 60 grams
sugar 5 tablespoons, divided 2.2 ounces 62 grams
½ Tahitian vanilla bean, split lengthwise (see Note) . . .
powdered gelatin ½ tablespoon . 4.5 grams
fine sea salt a pinch . .
milk 1 cup (237 ml) 8.5 ounces 242 grams
cognac (or pure vanilla extract) 1 tablespoon (1 teaspoon) 0.5 ounce 14 grams
cream of tartar ¼ teaspoon . .

Method

In a food processor, process the chocolate until very fine. Scrape the chocolate into a medium bowl and set a fine-mesh strainer suspended over it.

Into a mixing bowl, pour the cream and refrigerate it for at least 15 minutes. (Chill a handheld mixer’s beaters alongside the bowl.)

Into the bowl of a stand mixer, pour the egg whites and cover the bowl tightly with plastic wrap. Place the egg yolks in a small bowl.

In a small heavy saucepan, place 3 tablespoons/1.3 ounces/38 grams of the sugar. Scrape the vanilla bean seeds into the sugar and rub them in with your fingers. Add the vanilla bean pod. Add the egg yolks, gelatin, and salt. Using a silicone spatula, stir until well blended.

In another small saucepan (or in a 2 cup microwavable measure with a spout), scald the milk (heat it to the boiling point; small bubbles will form around the periphery). Whisk a few tablespoons into the egg yolk mixture and then gradually add the remaining milk, stirring constantly. Over medium-low heat, bring the mixture to just below the boiling point (170° to 180°F/77° to 82°C), stirring constantly. Steam will begin to appear and the mixture will be slightly thicker than cream. A finger will leave a well-defined track when it is run through the custard on the back of the spoon.

Immediately remove the custard from the heat and pour it through the strainer onto the chocolate in the bowl, scraping up the thickened cream that has settled to the bottom of the pan and pushing it through with the back of a spoon or silicone spatula. Stir until the chocolate is melted and the mixture is uniform in color. Remove the vanilla pod from the strainer (rinse, dry, and reserve the pod for another use).

Refrigerate the chocolate custard, uncovered, folding gently every 15 minutes for about 45 minutes to keep the custard against the bowl from setting. Continue folding until ribbons form and a small amount dropped from a spoon mounds heavily. (An instant-read thermometer should read 60° to 63°F/16° to 17°C.) Whisk in the cognac.