Gardenia Cake


Preparation info

  • Makes


    • Difficulty


Appears in

The Simple Art of Perfect Baking

By Flo Braker

Published 1984

  • About

This simple, tailored dessert combines almond, apricot and chocolate. Almond Paste Génoise is soaked with amaretto-flavored syrup and glazed with apricot jam, then with chocolate butter glaze. The gardenia blossoms pristine whiteness contrasts dramatically with the gleaming chocolate glaze.



    Advance Preparations

    Prepare Almond Paste Génoise.

    Prepare Soaking Syrup.

    Prepare Chocolate-Butter Glaze.

    Combine Soaking Syrup and amaretto in a liquid measuring cup.

    Place the ¼ strained apricot jam and the orange zest in a small saucepan over low heat to melt and combine flavors.

    Measure the strained apricot jam mixture for the glaze.

    Assembling the Cake

    Place the génoise on a flat surface and split it into two layers, each about 7/8 inch thick. Lift the top layer and set aside.

    Place the bottom layer, cut side up, on the cardboard round for easier handling. Brush with half the dessert syrup, using a pastry brush. Then, with an 8-inch flexible metal icing spatula, spread with ¼ cup of the strained apricot jam to produce a thin film, extending to the edge of the cake.

    Center the other layer over the strained apricot jam, brush it with the remaining dessert syrup and then spread the ½ cup apricot jam to coat the entire cake. Allow this glaze to set until it no longer feels too sticky to the touch (about 1 to 2 hours).

    To hasten the drying process of the glaze, place it in front of a small electric fan for 35 to 45 minutes, rotating it occasionally to dry evenly. Place cake as close to the fan as possible, elevating the dessert on a few books, if necessary.

    Making the Chocolate Glaze

    While the apricot glaze is drying, fill the bottom of a -quart double boiler with hot tap water (120 degrees). Place Chocolate-Butter Glaze in the top container over the water. Stir occasionally until smooth. Remove from heat to cool until close to 80 degrees, when it will be thicker and ready to glaze the cake.

    Glazing and Decorating the Cake

    You may want to refer to glazing techniques. Place the dessert on a cooling rack over a dry baking sheet to catch the excess Chocolate-Butter Glaze since the glaze is reusable. After coating the cake with the glaze, scrape any remaining from the baking sheet into a small bowl. When it is cooler (approximately 15 to 20 minutes), it will become thick enough to pipe onto the cake. When the glaze is ready, fill the paper cone half full, and pipe two lines in each direction so they intersect on top of the cake. Set aside at room temperature until serving.

    At serving time, wrap a small piece of plastic wrap around the stem of the fresh gardenia before inserting it into the cake at the point where the piped chocolate lines intersect.

    Storing and Serving the Cake

    Store and serve at room temperature.