Daring Bakers: Dobos Torte With a Cappuccino Mousse

8:41 PM

The August 2009 Daring Bakers' challenge was hosted by Angela of A Spoonful of Sugar and Lorraine of Not Quite Nigella. They chose the spectacular Dobos Torte based on a recipe from Rick Rodgers' cookbook Kaffeehaus: Exquisite Desserts from the Classic Caffés of Vienna, Budapest, and Prague.

So, What is Dobos Torte?

The Dobos Torte is a five-layer sponge cake, filled with a rich chocolate buttercream and topped with thin wedges of caramel. It was invented in 1885 by József C. Dobos, a Hungarian baker, and it rapidly became famous throughout Europe for both its extraordinary taste and its keeping properties. The recipe was a secret until Dobos retired in 1906 and gave the recipe to the Budapest Confectioners' and Gingerbread Makers' Chamber of Industry, providing that every member of the chamber can use it freely.

The Sponge layers were done a day earlier, wrapped tightly and refrigerated.I decided to go on with a Cappuccino Mousse for the filling and a white butter cream for icing the cake. Had some leftover Chocolate butter cream and used that for piping.
Now to the caramel, Just skipped the cake part and made some swirls and rounds on the parchment paper,it did not turn out pretty good as i planned. The caramel got stuck with the parchement and i had a hard time peeling it off. Finally got few pieces here and there.
Overall the challenge was Wonderful, but i have to think about it if making again!

Now to the recipe,


2 baking sheets
9” (23cm) springform tin and 8” cake tin, for templates ( i used a Loaf pan as template to make rectangle layers )
mixing bowls (1 medium, 1 large)
a sieve
a double boiler (a large saucepan plus a large heat-proof mixing bowl which fits snugly over the top of the pan)
a small saucepan
a whisk (you could use a balloon whisk for the entire cake, but an electric hand whisk or stand mixer will make life much easier)
metal offset spatula
sharp knife
piping bag and tip, optional

Preparation times:

Sponge layers 20 mins prep, 40 mins cooking total if baking each layer individually.
Buttercream: 20 mins cooking. Cooling time for buttercream: about 1 hour plus 10 minutes after this to beat and divide.
Caramel layer: 10-15 minutes.
Assembly of whole cake: 20 minutes

Sponge cake layers:

6 large eggs, separated, at room temperature
1 1/3 cups (162g) confectioner's (icing) sugar, divided
1 teaspoon (5ml) vanilla extract
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons (112g) sifted cake flour (SUBSTITUTE 95g plain flour + 17g cornflour (cornstarch) sifted together)
pinch of salt


The sponge layers can be prepared in advance and stored interleaved with parchment and well-wrapped in the fridge overnight.


1.Position the racks in the top and centre thirds of the oven and heat to 400F (200C).

2.Cut six pieces of parchment paper to fit the baking sheets. Using the bottom of a 9" (23cm) springform tin as a template and a dark pencil or a pen, trace a circle on each of the papers, and turn them over (the circle should be visible from the other side, so that the graphite or ink doesn't touch the cake batter.)

3.Beat the egg yolks, 2/3 cup (81g) of the confectioner's (icing) sugar, and the vanilla in a medium bowl with a mixer on high speed until the mixture is thick, pale yellow and forms a thick ribbon when the beaters are lifted a few inches above the batter, about 3 minutes. (You can do this step with a balloon whisk if you don't have a mixer.)

4.In another bowl, using clean beaters, beat the egg whites until soft peaks form. Gradually beat in the remaining 2/3 cup (81g) of confectioner's (icing)sugar until the whites form stiff, shiny peaks. Using a large rubber spatula, stir about 1/4 of the beaten whites into the egg yolk mixture, then fold in the remainder, leaving a few wisps of white visible. Combine the flour and salt. Sift half the flour over the eggs, and fold in; repeat with the remaining flour.

5.Line one of the baking sheets with a circle-marked paper. Using a small offset spatula, spread about 3/4cup of the batter in an even layer, filling in the traced circle on one baking sheet. Bake on the top rack for 5 minutes, until the cake springs back when pressed gently in the centre and the edges are lightly browned. While this cake bakes, repeat the process on the other baking sheet, placing it on the centre rack. When the first cake is done, move the second cake to the top rack.

6. Invert the first cake onto a flat surface and carefully peel off the paper. Slide the cake layer back onto the paper and let stand until cool.

7. Rinse the baking sheet under cold running water to cool, and dry it before lining with another parchment. Continue with the remaining papers and batter to make a total of six layers.

8.Completely cool the layers. Using an 8" springform pan bottom or plate as a template, trim each cake layer into a neat round. (A small serrated knife is best for this task.)

Cappuccino Mousse:

1 teaspoon unflavored gelatin
1/2 cup fat-free milk
3 teaspoon baking cocoa
1/2 teaspoon instant coffee granules
2/3 cup fat-free coffee-flavored yogurt
4 tablespoons sugar
1 cup reduced-fat whipped topping


1.In a small saucepan, sprinkle gelatin over milk; let stand for 1 minute. Heat over low heat, stirring until gelatin is completely dissolved.

2.Add cocoa and coffee; stir until dissolved.

3.Transfer to a small mixing bowl; refrigerate until mixture begins to thicken.

4.With a hand mixer,beat until light and fluffy.

5.Combine yogurt and sugar; beat into gelatin mixture. Fold in whipped topping. Refrigerate until firm.

White Butter Cream:

1/2 cup solid vegetable shortening
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter or margarine softened
1 teaspoon clear vanilla extract
4 cups sifted confectioners' sugar (approximately 1 lb.)
2 tablespoons milk


1.In large bowl, cream shortening and butter with electric mixer.

2.Add vanilla. Gradually add sugar, one cup at a time, beating well on medium speed. Scrape sides and bottom of bowl often. When all sugar has been mixed in, icing will appear dry. Add milk and beat at medium speed until light and fluffy.

3. keep icing bowl in refrigerator when not in use. Refrigerated in an airtight container. Rewhip before using.

Chocolate Buttercream:

4 large eggs, at room temperature
1 cup (200g) caster (ultrafine or superfine white) sugar
4oz (110g) bakers chocolate or your favourite dark chocolate, finely chopped
2 sticks plus 2 tablespoons (250g) unsalted butter, at room temperature.

Note: This can be prepared in advance and kept chilled until required.


1.Prepare a double-boiler: quarter-fill a large saucepan with water and bring it to a boil.

2.Meanwhile, whisk the eggs with the sugar until pale and thickened, about five minutes. You can use a balloon whisk or electric hand mixer for this.

3.Fit bowl over the boiling water in the saucepan (water should not touch bowl) and lower the heat to a brisk simmer. Cook the egg mixture, whisking constantly, for 2-3 minutes until you see it starting to thicken a bit. Whisk in the finely chopped chocolate and cook, stirring, for a further 2-3 minutes.

4.Scrape the chocolate mixture into a medium bowl and leave to cool to room temperature. It should be quite thick and sticky in consistency.

5.When cool, beat in the soft butter, a small piece (about 2 tablespoons/30g) at a time. An electric hand mixer is great here, but it is possible to beat the butter in with a spatula if it is soft enough. You should end up with a thick, velvety chocolate buttercream. Chill while you make the caramel topping.

Lorraine's note:

If you're in Winter just now your butter might not soften enough at room temperature, which leads to lumps forming in the buttercream. Male sure the butter is of a very soft texture I.e. running a knife through it will provide little resistance, before you try to beat it into the chocolate mixture. Also, if you beat the butter in while the chocolate mixture is hot you'll end up with more of a ganache than a buttercream!

Caramel topping:

1 cup (200g) caster (superfine or ultrafine white) sugar
12 tablespoons (180 ml) water
8 teaspoons (40 ml) lemon juice
1 tablespoon neutral oil (e.g. grapeseed, rice bran, sunflower)


1.Choose the best-looking cake layer for the caramel top. To make the caramel topping: Line a jellyroll pan with parchment paper and butter the paper. Place the reserved cake layer on the paper. Score the cake into 12 equal wedges. Lightly oil a thin, sharp knife and an offset metal spatula.

2.Stir the sugar, water and lemon juice in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil over a medium heat, stirring often to dissolve the sugar. Once dissolved into a smooth syrup, turn the heat up to high and boil without stirring, swirling the pan by the handle occasionally and washing down any sugar crystals on the sides of the pan with a wet brush until the syrup has turned into an amber-coloured caramel.

3.The top layer is perhaps the hardest part of the whole cake so make sure you have a oiled, hot offset spatula ready. I also find it helps if the cake layer hasn't just been taken out of the refrigerator. I made mine ahead of time and the cake layer was cold and the toffee set very, very quickly—too quickly for me to spread it. Immediately pour all of the hot caramel over the cake layer. You will have some leftover most probably but more is better than less and you can always make nice toffee pattern using the extra to decorate. Using the offset spatula, quickly spread the caramel evenly to the edge of the cake layer. Let cool until beginning to set, about 30 seconds. Using the tip of the hot oiled knife (keep re-oiling this with a pastry brush between cutting), cut through the scored marks to divide the caramel layer into 12 equal wedges. Cool another minute or so, then use the edge of the knife to completely cut and separate the wedges using one firm slice movement (rather than rocking back and forth which may produce toffee strands). Cool completely.

Angela's note:

I recommend cutting, rather than scoring, the cake layer into wedges before covering in caramel (reform them into a round). If you have an 8” silicon round form, then I highly recommend placing the wedges in that for easy removal later and it also ensures that the caramel stays on the cake layer. Once set, use a very sharp knife to separate the wedges.

Assembling the Dobos: ( AS Given by Lorriane and Angela )

1.Divide the buttercream into six equal parts.

2.Place a dab of chocolate buttercream on the middle of a 7 1/2” cardboard round and top with one cake layer. Spread the layer with one part of the chocolate icing. Repeat with 4 more cake layers. Spread the remaining icing on the sides of the cake.

3.Optional: press the finely chopped hazelnuts onto the sides of the cake.

4.Propping a hazelnut under each wedge so that it sits at an angle, arrange the wedges on top of the cake in a spoke pattern. If you have any leftover buttercream, you can pipe rosettes under each hazelnut or a large rosette in the centre of the cake. Refrigerate the cake under a cake dome until the icing is set, about 2 hours. Let slices come to room temperature for the best possible flavour.

How i Assembled:

1.Divide the Cappuccino Mousse into six equal parts.

2.Place a dab of Mousse on the middle of cardboard and top with one cake layer. Spread the layer with one part of the Mousse. Repeat with 4 more cake layers.

3.Spread the White butter cream icing on the sides of the cake.

4.press the finely Shaved Dark Chocolate onto the sides of the cake.

5.Fill a piping bag with White butter cream and tipno:22. Fill another piping bag with chocolate butter cream and tipno:18.

6. Pipe alternative layers of shells on the torte.

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  1. Lovely!! Love the decoration.

  2. Love the way your Dobos turned out: it is flashy and scrumptous!! Really like the way you decorate the cake and the capuccino mousse seems like an ideal choice!


  3. Looks so yummy and perfect. You are simply rocking :)

  4. Everyone seems to have had probs with this stuff..but I'd say yours look so gorgeous Satya..hats off Satya..:)

  5. Wow! Stunning job with the decorating!

  6. Wow! It really looks awesome! I wonder how it tastes :9! Yum yum! Decoration is perfect!

  7. Beautiful - and that cappuccino mousse sounds amazing!!

  8. lovely tempting cake dear..neat presentation

  9. i have been seeing Tortes everywhere, and i must say this is one of the best!! lip smacking truly!!

  10. Wowww really am drooling rite now here...wat a gorgeous torte Sathya...

  11. fancy schmancy! this looks so good, and so creative! love it :D

  12. OMG, Cappuccino Mousse, that's heavenly, and I don't even like anything coffee or coffee related! Gorgeous, eye catching decor..one of the best I've seen thus far! Beautifully done!!

  13. Looks yummy and beautiful !! Seems like butter-scotch color to me...my fav flavor !

  14. Cappuchino mousse sounds like a perfect pairing with chocolate. Beautiful torte.

  15. gorgeous and yumm! love the cappuchino mousse!!

  16. I think the recipe appears too long.. but photos are good and way of representation is again good....

    I like the images...

  17. this is so delicious!...i was just looking for something like this to make for my husband's birthday..i am following you too :). Glad you liked my blog :)

  18. Decoration on top of torte looks great Sathya.

    I have nominated you for Kreativ Blogger Award. Kindly Check my blog.


  19. Awesome one! looks so yummy! gr8 job with the baking.

  20. wow! Awesome .Looks delicious ! Thanks for sharing!

  21. Torte looks deleicious Sathya....will try it soon..

  22. that's a lovely art, I should say; looks absolutely delightful and perfect!

  23. Wow that looks perfect... nice clicks as well.. following u now..

  24. that's a lovely art, I should say; looks absolutely delightful and perfect!

  25. Wowww really am drooling rite now here...wat a gorgeous torte Sathya...

  26. Torte looks deleicious Sathya....will try it soon..

  27. wow! Awesome .Looks delicious ! Thanks for sharing!

  28. Awesome one! looks so yummy! gr8 job with the baking.

  29. Love the way your Dobos turned out: it is flashy and scrumptous!! Really like the way you decorate the cake and the capuccino mousse seems like an ideal choice!




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