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These delicious hazelnut mini cakes are quickly and easily baked in individual ramekins. The frosting is an easy pumpkin spice white chocolate mousse made with just chocolate, spice and heavy cream that complements the hazelnut flavor beautifully. A wonderful afternoon treat!
I’ve got a recipe for a flavored white chocolate mousse and I always knew that it would be a smasher as a frosting on a cake but it took me a while to find the perfect cake for it. This here is it. It’s a hazelnut butter cake (hazelnut and pumpkin spice are a beautiful combination) and I adapted the cake batter recipe from Bon Appetit.
I started with a full-size cake but that didn’t work for the frosting. The mousse is not as firm as, say, a buttercream and just wasn’t able to stand up to all that cake. But mini cakes were a completely different story. I baked them in 4-ounce ramekins, topped them with a few dollops of the mousse and that worked out beautifully. The mousse is similar to whipped cream in texture, complements the cake wonderfully and the proportions are absolutely perfect.
How to make the pumpkin spice white chocolate frosting:
There is very little actual work involved in this white chocolate frosting but it does need to chill for a quite a while (4 hours), so you do need to plan ahead for that.
You start by melting chopped white chocolate in a saucepan along with heavy cream and pumpkin spice.
Next you transfer the mix into a bowl and chill it in the fridge for at least 4 hours. After that you simply whip the mix with an electric mixer just like you would whip regular cream.
How to make the hazelnut mini cakes:
You start the batter for these mini cakes with your dry ingredients: hazelnuts, a bit of granulated sugar, flour, pumpkin spice, baking powder and salt. Since you’re starting with whole hazelnuts, you have to grind them in your food processor along with the sugar. You whisk everything together and then set it aside.
Next you beat softened butter and brown sugar together until they are nice and fluffy. You beat in eggs and then your dry ingredients, then fill the batter into 4-ounce ramekins and bake them.
Love mini cake desserts? Check out these Mini Chocolate Bites:
Pumpkin Spice White Chocolate Mousse Hazelnut Mini Cakes
For the frosting:
- 4 ounces white chocolate (I recommend Baker's Premium White Chocolate Baking Chocolate Bar)*
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 1/4 teaspoon pumpkin spice
For the cakes:
- 1/2 cup raw hazelnuts, more for garnish
- 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon pumpkin spice
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 8 tablespoons unsalted butter at room temperature
- 3/4 cup brown sugar
- 3 eggs
For the frosting:
- Cut the chocolate into small chunks, then put it in a saucepan along with the cream and the pumpkin spice.
- Turn on the heat and slowly dissolve the chocolate. Don't let the cream get too hot, it shouldn't simmer, it should just be warm enough to melt the chocolate.
- Transfer the mix into a bowl and chill in the fridge for at least 4 hours.
- Beat the mix with an electric mixer until firm.
For the cakes:
- Heat the oven to 350 degrees F.
- Grease eight 4-ounce ramekins and dust with flour.
- Process hazelnuts and granulated sugar in a food processor until finely ground.
- Whisk the ground nuts with the flour, spice, baking powder and salt in a bowl. Set aside.
- Beat butter and brown sugar until fluffy, 2-3 minutes.
- Beat in the eggs, one at a time, until well incorporated.
- Beat in the dry ingredients.
- Fill batter into the ramekins and bake until a toothpick comes out clean (20 to 25 minutes).
- Let cool, then turn out.
- Pipe the frosting onto the cakes and sprinkle with chopped hazelnuts.
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