A dessert that doesn’t make you choose between cake and cookies – this chocolate chip cookie cake is a dream come true. With delicate chocolate chip sponges, fluffy Swiss meringue buttercream frosting, a chocolate ganache drip and an overabundance of chocolate chip cookies… there’s nothing not to love about this cake.
Pre-heat the oven to 355 ºF (180 ºC) and line three 6 inch (15 cm) round cake tins with baking/greaseproof paper (or you just can grease and flour them lightly).
In a large bowl, sift together the gluten free flour blend, almond flour, xanthan gum and baking powder. Add the sugar and salt, and mix until combined.
Add the softened butter and, using either a stand mixer with the paddle attachment or a hand mixer with the double beater attachments, work the butter into the dry ingredients until you get a texture resembling coarse sand.
In a separate bowl, mix together the eggs, egg whites, milk, lemon juice and vanilla. Add the wet ingredients to the dry+butter mixture, and whisk/mix well until you get a smooth batter with no flour clumps.
To prepare the chocolate chips: Sprinkle the (mini) chocolate chips with some water (~1/2 tsp), and then mix them with a tablespoon or so with flour. Make sure they're all thoroughly coated in flour.
Transfer the cake batter into the prepared cake tins. I recommend doing this in several layers, sprinkling each layer with the flour-coated chocolate chips. This will reduce the risk of the chips sinking to the bottom during baking.
Smooth out the top, sprinkle with any remaining chocolate chips, and bake in the pre-heated oven at 355 ºF (180 ºC) for about 35 - 37 minutes or until risen, golden brown on top and an inserted toothpick comes out clean.
If the sponges start browning too quickly or too much, cover them with aluminium foil and continue baking until done.
Allow the sponges to cool in the cake tins for about 10 minutes, then remove from the tins, and allow to cool completely on a cooling rack.
Mix the egg whites, sugar and cream of tartar in a heat-proof bowl, and set the bowl above a pot of simmering water.
Heat the meringue mixture with constant stirring until it reaches 150 ºF (65 ºC) and the sugar has melted.
Transfer the heated meringue mixture into a stand mixer with a whisk attachment (or use a hand mixer with the double beater attachment) and whisk the mixture for 5 - 7 minutes, until it reaches room temperature and forms glossy peaks. Do not over-whisk as you can lose some of the fluffiness.
(NOTE: The meringue must be at room temperature before you start adding the butter – otherwise, you'll get a soup and not a deliciously fluffy buttercream!)
Add the butter, 1 - 2 tbsp at a time, while constantly whisking/beating at medium speed. If using a stand mixer, I prefer to switch to a paddle attachment for this step.
Continue until you've used up all the butter.
The buttercream will probably look like it's split at some stage (or it might become very runny, almost "soupy") – don't worry, that's normal. Just continue adding the butter and whisking/beating. The buttercream will eventually become velvety smooth. Be careful not to over-beat it, though – you will lose the air (and fluffiness) from the original meringue!
Add the salt and vanilla, and whisk/beat briefly until evenly incorporated.
Set aside until needed.
Place the chopped dark chocolate into a heat-proof bowl. Heat the double/heavy cream until only just boiling (either on the stove or in the microwave), then pour it over the chocolate.
Allow to stand for 2 - 3 minutes, then stir well until you get a smooth glossy ganache.
Set aside and allow to cool slightly.
Stack the sponges together with generous layers of buttercream in between.
Frost the outside of the cake with the remaining white buttercream, creating an even smooth layer.
If your buttercream isn't perfectly smooth, you can use a cake smoother (metal bench scraper) dipped in hot water (and dried) to create a super smooth surface by "melting" the outermost buttercream. Do this gently – you want to smooth away any imperfections, not completely melt your frosting.
Chill the cake in the fridge for about 30 minutes - 1 hour.
Once chilled, decorate the bottom third of the cake with the chocolate chip cookie crumbs, creating a "collar" around the bottom of the cake.
Check the consistency of the chocolate ganache. It should be runny enough to drip, but not too hot (otherwise it will melt the buttercream). If it's too thick, heat it up briefly in the microwave.
For the easiest (and prettiest) drip, transfer the chocolate ganache into a squeeze bottle.
Create the chocolate drip: first allow the chocolate ganache to gently run down the sides, then fill out the top of the cake by drizzling on more ganache and smoothing it out with an offset spatula.
Decorate the top of the cake with chocolate chip cookies.
That's it! Enjoy!
The cake keeps well in a closed container or wrapped in cling film, in the fridge (or a cool dry place) for 3 - 4 days.
Recipe by The Loopy Whisk (www.theloopywhisk.com).