May 21, 2013

Palet d'Or with Devil's Food Cake

This week we tackled the palet d'or or chocolate disc. This is another multi-step, multi-day project but nothing is particularly difficult and with the excellent instruction in the book it is doable and is a showstopper of a dessert, with or without edible gold leaf!

ingredient to note: powdered gelatin

Another challenging recipe! Lots of components, but not as many as the parfaits. First I made the devils food cake, which was easy enough. My cake didn't bake evenly, it was a bit lumpy after it came out. My freezer isn't big enough to fit a half sheet pan, so I cut the cake in half and wrapped both halves for freezing. The next day I finished the components and assembly. The chocolate cream was straightforward, not too difficult. I didn't have a cake ring, so I used an 8 inch springform pan instead. It was a bit too tall, but it worked ok.

The glaze was challenging. I didn't have gelatin sheets, so I did a lot of Internet research about substituting powdered gelatin. I came up with one packet of gelatin (7 oz) per 3 sheets of gelatin. The glaze was way too thick. Either I cooked it too long or the gelatin was too strong. It didn't flow like it should have. I did cover the cake, but it took an offset spatula and some finesse to get it. I added gold sprinkles and done!

This one merits another try, with the right tools and ingredients. PS- just tried the cake. It's a chocolate explosion! Like something I'd buy in a fancy patisserie in Paris. Can't believe I made it! 


I was pretty happy with out this turned out. It is really rich so I'd either make the two cake layers thicker or add an extra layer to balance the decadent chocolate cream. I loved pouring on the glaze. I did use leaf gelatin as recommended so I didn't have any trouble with the consistency. My issue was getting the cake off the rack, cleaning the edges and placing it onto the serve stand without messing up the bottom but I think that comes with practice. I wrote some in depth notes on my blog.


Devil's Food Cake
Standard bake, Metric measure

This was a very easy cake to make. I finally got to use mayonnaise in a cake. I had heard about people using this ingredient in cakes but I never found one I liked enough until now. The directions were straight forward and it took only a few minutes to make the batter and 10 minutes to bake. This was a record time for me. The cake turned out thin and even thinner at the edges since I didn't use the off-set spatula as instructed. I should pay more attention next time to ensure the batter is evenly. I froze the cake until I had time to complete the chocolate cream and chocolate glaze for assembly.

Palet d'Or

I was so confused with the instructions of encasing the cake rounds and placing them upside down. I had to use one if my life lines to have my baker friend Anita explain the process of assembling the cake. Afterwards, all was understood and went well. After adding the chocolate cream, I froze the cake in the cake ring overnight.

In the morning, I followed the chocolate glaze instructions which called to chill the gelatin in ice water to soften while I made the cocoa mixture over the stove. After it reduced by 1/3, I squeezed the water off the gelatin and mixed it in the cocoa mixture.  I took the cake out of the freezer and placed it on a cooling rack sitting inside a sheet pan. I wrapped the cake ring with a warm kitchen towel as stated in the book and lifted the ring off the cake. After reheating the glaze I poured it over the cake and it turned out perfect. I used a cake lifter to move the cake to a cake platter. I made the mistake of using a curved platter (which I have now renamed to a platter bowl) and when I laid the cake down the chocolate on the side buckled and ruined the perfect shape.

We ate the some of the cake for dessert after dinner. What a surprise to find it had a crunch from encasing the cake with the 70% chocolate. The cream was lucious and not too sweet although it was extremely rich. Overall my family and I gave this cake a TEN!  My family eats healthy but for the first time they asked for seconds. Every step was well worth it and I will make this cake so again.

Recipe featured here


  1. Looks wonderful! Very good job on the cake. I am planning on making it this weekend - but I am also confused with the instructions on placing and freezing the cake. Did you brush one round with chocolate and then place it the chocolate side down? Doesn't this make the cake stick to the bottom? I'd be greatful if you could help me with this one!


    1. Anna, I too have a question about that. What did you end up doing? Did you use the pate a glacer or melted chocolate? After much deliberation, I was thinking that the purpose of spreading the layer of chocolate on and then placing that chocolate side down was to help "sturdy" the base of the cake with all the freezing? But no one commented on that part of the recipe. Did you make any modifications when you made the cake? How did it come out? Thanks, Carol

    2. To answer your question, yes, you place the chocolate coated side down, but it's on parchment paper, so it shouldn't stick.