Gianduja Marjolaine

My dear friend Mandy highly recommended a recipe book put out by St Margaret’s Anglican Girls School in Brisbane. The book is called ‘Food With A View’. I called the school office, ordered my copy to be delivered, then waiting impatiently by the letterbox. I was not disappointed. Every recipe looks like a winner and every recipe I have made I have been 100% happy with.

This recipe is the latest one I have tried – Gianduja Marjolaine. No idea how to pronounce it so I refer to it as a big Ferrero Rocher. A hazelnut meringue layered with hazelnut, chocolate cream and then covered in chocolate ganache.

This can be made well ahead of time and kept in the fridge. I think it would have been best to leave it overnight to give time for the cream to firm up. I lost half my filling by trying to slice it before it had set properly. Slice and serve as is or with some berries. Perfect to have with coffee.

This is quite rich so small slices will feed a lot of people. It wasn’t very time consuming to make. The only time consuming bit was roasting the hazelnuts and peeling the hazelnuts.

gianduja marjolaine

(from ‘Food With A View’ and originally from Gourmet Traveller)

220g (1 cup) caster sugar
185g (1 1/4) roasted and peeled hazelnuts
1 tablespoon cornflour
6 egg whites

gianduja filling

100g (2/3 cup) roasted and peeled hazelnuts
40g icing sugar
100g dark couverture chocolate, melted
1 cup pouring cream, whisked until soft peaks form

ganache

250g darke couverture chocolate, chopped
1/2 cup pouring cream

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees C. Line a 26cm x 32cm baking tray.

Combine 55g (ΒΌ cup) of the caster sugar, hazelnuts and cornflour in a food processor and process until finely ground.

Using an electric mixer, whisk egg whites until foamy, add a pinch of salt and whisk until soft peaks form, then gradually add remaining sugar and whisk until mixture is thick and glossy. Carefully fold nut mixture into egg white mixture in 2 batches until just combined. Spoon mixture onto the tray and smooth top and sides. Bake for 25 minutes or until golden. Stand meringue for 10 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack covered with a piece of baking paper and carefully peel off baking paper lining. Cool.

For gianduja filling, process hazelnuts and icing sugar in a food processor until a smooth, oily paste forms (this will take about 5 minutes and you will need to keep scraping down the side of the bowl). Add melted chocolate and process until combined and mixture is smooth. Transfer gianduja to a bowl, stir in one-third of the whipped cream to loosen, then fold in remaining whipped cream until just combined.

For ganache, process chopped chocolate in a food processor until the size of large breadcrumbs. Bring cream just to the boil in a small saucepan. With food processor running, add hot cream to chocolate and process until mixture is smooth. Transfer to a small bowl and cool at room temperature until thick and of spreading consistency.

Cut hazelnut meringue into 4 width ways. Place a meringue rectangle on a serving plate and spread with one-third gianduja filling, then repeat layering twice more, finishing with a layer of meringue. Spread top and sides of cake with ganache and refrigerate until set.

In future I will pop the layered meringue and gianduja filling the fridge for an hour or two before topping with the ganache.

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