Chocolate & Espresso Meringue Layer Cake

Absolutely stylish and delicious chocolate & espresso meringue layer this recipe is decadent, divine and oh so addictive. Good luck stopping at one slice! Also a great option for a gluten free dessert! Recipe from Fresh –  meringue queen, Stacey O’Gorman,  

For The 5 Meringue Layers:
350g egg whites, about 10 Woodland Eggs
700g caster sugar
1 tsp DYC White Vinegar
1 tsp cocoa powder + extra for dusting
1 tsp instant coffee, blitzed until smooth

For The Chocolate Coffee Ganache:
250g Whittaker’s dark chocolate - broken up or finely chopped
250g Anchor Cream

For The Coffee Whipped Cream:
2 cups Anchor Cream
1 tbsp instant coffee, dissolved in a little hot water
¼ cup icing sugar

To Decorate:
Ground coffee
Whittaker’s dark chocolate shavings and peels
Fresh raspberries
Optional: Edible Flowers

For The 5 Meringue Layers: Preheat oven to 200C. Line a deep roasting dish with baking paper, pour in the caster sugar and heat in the oven for about 7 minutes.
Pour the (weighed) egg whites into a mixer and whisk slowly, allowing small bubbles to form, then increase the speed until the egg whites form stiff peaks.
Take the sugar from the oven, then turn the oven down to 100C
With the mixer on full speed slowly add the hot sugar into the stiff egg whites, adding 1 tablespoon at a time, making sure the mixture comes back up to stiff peaks after each spoonful of sugar. Once all the sugar is added, add the vinegar. Continue to whisk at full speed until the mixture is stiff and glossy (you shouldn’t be able to feel the texture of the sugar between your fingers), roughly 5-7 minutes.
Carefully fold in cocoa powder and instant coffee, until just combined.
Using a dinner plate as a guide draw 5 circles on baking paper. Place the baking paper on baking trays. Spread the meringue mixture in the drawn circles and bake for 2 hours at 100C, until the meringue bases come off the baking paper clean. Turn off the oven, leave the door slightly ajar, and let the meringues cool completely (you can leave them overnight)
For The Chocolate Coffee Ganache: Heat the cream until almost boiling on a stove top or microwave. Add the chocolate to the cream and whisk until a glossy thick ganache forms. The ganache should be smooth and silky and will firm as it cools.
For The Coffee Whipped Cream: Beat the cream with the icing sugar and instant coffee until stiff peaks.
To Assemble: Remove the meringues from the baking paper. Place the 1st meringue on your serving plate, top with ganache and whipped cream. Repeat the layers. For the final layer, place the last meringue on top of stack and decorate with ganache, coffee, dark chocolate and fresh raspberries.
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