Mocha Cake RecipeI baked this mocha cake recipe in response to a reader's request for a dessert like the one he remembered from his younger days spent in France. I know I can't live up to a childhood memory, but hopefully this cake comes close. Gateau Moka is still popular, and you are likely to find slices of it served in a salon de thé or a pâtisserie.
Recipe Notes for Mocha Cake
A genoise cake is made with no leavening other than beaten eggs. Please don't be put off by the "risk" of making a cake this way, all you need is a mixer (I did it with a hand mixer) and a bit of patience. Since this mocha cake recipe contains no butter, it can take the rich butter cream frosting without becoming overwhelming. You can make the cake layer ahead of time, wrap it in plastic and store it at room temperature for two or three days.
I made this mocha cake in one 10 inch round cake pan, then sliced it into three layers to frost. You could also make a two layer cake by baking it in two 9 inch cake pans. The results will be a slightly higher cake then the one pictured here.
French buttercream frosting is made with lots of egg yolks, which will need to be as fresh as possible. It is a little tricky to make, but well worth the effort. This is not a good frosting to make on hot or humid days. It should be at room temperature for easy spreading and decorating, but then should be immediately refrigerated.
Preparation Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
Makes 8 generous servings.
Coffee Flavored Syrup
Place the sugar and water in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil on medium heat, then boil for two minutes. Remove from heat and stir in coffee extract.
French Buttercream Frosting
Spread the almonds on a baking sheet and bake at 400°F for 2 to 4 minutes. Watch out - these toast quickly.
The word mocha comes from the Yemen city of the same name. With a port on the Red Sea, Mocha has been exporting coffee beans throughout the world for centuries. When used to describe a recipe, mocha indicates that you will find coffee as a dominate flavor.
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