MILK CHOCOLATE CAKE:
6 oz MILK CHOCOLATE, COARSELY
5 LARGE EGG YOLKS
2 ts ALMOND EXTRACT
3/4 c TOASTED SLIVERED ALMONDS
1/2 c ALL-PURPOSE FLOUR
10 tb UNSALTED BUTTER, CUT
1 ts ORANGE ZEST
7 LARGE EGG WHITES
1/4 c GRANULATED SUGAR
MILK CHOCOLATE-ORANGE CREAM:
7 oz MILK CHOCOLATE, FINELY
3/4 c HEAVY CREAM
3 tb ORANGE LIQUEUR, SUCH AS
DARK CHOCOLATE CURLS:
2 oz (OR LARGER) CHUNK SEMISWEET
3 NAVEL ORANGES
1/2 c ORANGE JUICE
2 tb HONEY
2 ts CORNSTARCH
2 tb ORANGE LIQUEUR, SUCH AS
MILK CHOCOLATE GLAZE:
12 oz MILK CHOCOLATE, FINELY
1/2 c PLUS 3 TABLESPOONS HEAVY
2 tb LIGHT CORN SYRUP
4 tb ALMOND LIQUEUR, SUCH AS
SPECIAL EQUIPMENT: Six 3-inch metal ring molds (1 3/4 inches in
height). Make the milk chocolate cake: Position a rack in the center
of the oven and preheat to 325 degrees F. Lightly butter an 11
1/2-inch by 17 1/2-inch jellyroll pan and line the bottom with
parchment paper. Butter the paper and dust the bottom and sides with
cocoa powder, lightly tapping out the excess. Set the pan aside.
Melt the chocolate according to the directions in the Chocolate Key.
In a large stainless steel bowl, vigorously whisk together the egg
yolks and the almond extract until the mixture is thick, about 1
minute. Set aside.
In the bowl of a food processor, combine the toasted almonds and the
flour and process until the nuts are ground to a fine powder. In a 4
1/2-quart bowl of a heavy-duty electric mixer using the paddle
attachment, beat the butter on medium speed until it is pale and soft
peaks begin to form, about 3 to 5 minutes. Lower the speed, add the
zest and the almond flour and mix until well combined, about 2 to 3
minutes. Add the reserved chocolate, then the yolks, mixing just
In a dry, grease-free 4 1/2-quart bowl of a heavy-duty electric mixer
with the wire whip attachment, beat the egg whites on low speed until
frothy. Increase the speed to medium and beat until soft peaks begin
to form, 2 to 3 minutes, then gradually add the sugar. Increase the
speed to high and continue to beat until the whites are glossy and
hold stiff peaks when the whip is lifted, 1 to 2 more minutes.
Using a large rubber spatula, mix 1/3 of the whites into the
chocolate-almond-butter mixture to lighten it . Gently and quickly
fold in another third of the whites. Fold in the remaining whites.
Scrape the batter into the prepared pan and spread it evenly with an
offset metal spatula. Bake for 30 minutes until the cake springs back
when lightly touched and the sides pull away from the pan. Cool in
the pan for 10 minutes, then invert onto a cooling rack and remove
the parchment paper. When the cake has cooled, cut out 18 cake rounds
using a 3-inch by 1 3/4- inch metal ring mold. Set the cake rounds
aside until ready to assemble the dessert.
Make the milk chocolate-orange cream: Place the chopped chocolate
into a medium stainless steel bowl. In a medium saucepan, bring the
cream to a boil. Remove the pan from the heat and pour the cream over
the chocolate. Allow the mixture to stand for 30 seconds to melt the
chocolate; whisk gently until smooth. Stir in the orange liqueur.
Refrigerate until thoroughly chilled.