Milk Chocolate Torte with Assam Tea Ganache

8 ounces dark milk chocolate (41% cocoa content)
4 tablespoons of Assam tea leaves- we suggest Assam Harmutty or Assam Golden Buds
½ cup of water
4 ounces unsalted butter
4 large eggs, separated
1/3 cup all purpose flour, sifted twice
2 teaspoons malted milk powder

Assam Ganache
7 ounces heavy cream
2 tablespoons Assam tea leaves- we suggest Assam Harmutty or Assam Golden Buds
7 ounces dark milk chocolate, cut into ½-inch pieces
1 tablespoon unsalted butter

Preheat over to 350°. Lightly coat the bottom and sides of an 8-inch springfoam or regular cake pan with non-flavored aerosolized spray. Line the bottom with a circle o parchment paper.

In a double boiler or a stainless steel bowl set over a pan of simmering water, melt the chocolate. In a separate small saucepan, bring the tea leaves, water, and butter to a boil. Remove from the heat and stir to melt the butter, allowing the tea leaves to infuse in the water-butter mixture for about 3 minutes. Pass through a fine sieve into the chocolate. Stir to blend. Allow to cool for about 15 minutes.

Separate the eggs, placing the whites into a perfectly clean, fat-free bowl of an electric mixture and the yolks into the chocolate mixture. Beat whites until soft peaks form. Sift flour and malted milk powder together and then fold in egg whites. Fold this flour-malted milk powder mixture gently but thoroughly into the chocolate base. Pour into a prepared cake pan and bake for about 35 minutes, to until the cake appears firm, but not dry. This cake is very moist and will fall as it cools.

To make the ganache:
In a heavy 1-quart saucepan, bring the cream and tea leaves to a boil. Remove from heat and allow to infuse further for 3 minutes. Pass through a fine mesh sieve into a bowl set over a pot of simmering water. Slowly add the chocolate and gently stir to blend, without aerating. Add the butter and stir until completely melted. Set aside.

To assemble:
Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper or foil. Place the cake on a cooling rack, then place the rack on the cookie sheet. Pour the ganache over the cake, using a spatula to spread it evenly. Allow to set. Scrape up any ganache that drips off the cake and pour over the cake a second time (reheat slightly over a pot of water if needed to loosen the mixture). Cool at room temperature.
Recipe courtesy of Cooking with Tea by Robert Wemischner and Diana Rosen

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Beth Johnston, a tea importer and noted tea expert, publishes an informative monthly newsletter on tea, tea history, health and lifestyle enhancements. To learn more about the world of tea, join her free newsletter at http://www.TeasEtc.com/Newsletter.asp or visit http://www.TeasEtc.com.

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