Last month hubby and I celebrated our 4-year wedding anniversary and 13 years since we’ve been together. So I thought a special occasion deserved a special cake and decided to make a lovely heart-shaped cake covered in fondant roses :). The cake batter is similar to the red velvet cake from my cake pops recipe except I replaced ¼ cup flour with cocoa powder and I didn’t add the red food colouring. I just doubled the ingredients to make two cakes. You will need a heart-shaped pan, greased with butter and floured or lined with parchment paper. If you don’t have a heart-shaped pan it’s very easy to make the cake using two basic pans – an 8-inch round and an 8-inch square baking pans. Cut the round cake in half and place each half to two adjacent sides of the square cake. Easy breezy! Not even sure how I ended up buying the heart-shaped pan :-O!
For the filling I was inspired by the cake we ordered for our baby’s baptism. It had a chocolate-hazelnut filling with a rich flavour and a great crunchy texture. I decided to use something similar for this cake so I made a delicious chocolate ganache filling with caramelized hazelnuts.
You can cover the cake with fondant and decorate it with fondant roses as I did or keep it simple and use the chocolate ganache (without the hazelnuts for a smoother texture) to frost the cake. Another idea is to place homemade or store-bought chocolate truffles to make it look more like a heart-shaped chocolate box.
If you want to make the fondant roses at home check out my tutorial on How to Make Fondant Roses. Make the roses ahead of time to allow them to dry properly.
Time: 120 min, Prep: 30 min. or more depending on how you want to decorate the cake Cook: 60 min.
- See ingredients and step by step instructions here. Don’t forget to replace ¼ cup flour with cocoa powder and don’t add the red food colouring.
- 500 ml (2 cups) whipping cream
- 500 g semi-sweet chocolate
- 100 g hazelnuts
- 220 (1 cup) g sugar
- 2 Tbsp hazelnut liqueur
For decorating cake:
- Chocolate Fondant ( 1.5 pounds)
- Ivory Fondant – for the roses and to make the marbled edges; I made 22 roses using the steps in this tutorial – How to Make Fondant Roses
- Fondant tools: smoother (or palm of your hands), roller, cutter (or a regular knife)
- Frill cutters to emboss the tiny hearts on the fondant strips at the top and bottom of the cake
Make your roses a few days ahead.
The base recipe for the filling is chocolate ganache. You just need to heat the whipping cream over medium heat, remove from heat, add the chocolate and stir until completely mixed and glossy.
Add the hazelnut liqueur (forgot to add it, oops!) and set aside to cool. Then refrigerate for at least 3 hours or overnight.
To make the caramelized hazelnuts, roast them in the oven for 6 minutes. Allow them to cool and then rub them until the skins come off.
Melt the sugar in a heavy-bottom saucepan over low-medium heat. Stir constantly with a spoon until sugar reaches a golden-brown colour. Remove from heat, stir the hazelnuts in and coat them with sugar. Take the nuts out with a fork and place them on parchment paper.
When they have cooled off, use a meat tenderizer mallet to “chop” the nuts.
Whip the chilled chocolate mixture until light and fluffy. If it’s too thick you can mix in a few tablespoons of whipped cream. Mix in the chopped hazelnuts in 2/3 of the mixture. You will use the remaining to crumb coat the cake.
Place one of the cake layers on your cake platter and using a spatula evenly cover the top of the first layer with chocolate-hazelnut filling. Place the second layer on top and crumb coat the cake before covering it in fondant.
Trace the outline of your heart pan onto a piece of paper. Sprinkle some powdered sugar onto your work surface and roll out fondant with a rolling pin. Cut out the heart shape and place it on top of the cake. Smooth the fondant out with the palm of your hand or a fondant smoother.
Next you’ll cover the sides. Use a piece of string to measure the cake around and another one to measure the side of the cake. Also, you want the cake strip to be a little taller than the cake so take that into account when you cut your fondant strip. I did this to hide the bottom of the roses. If you pinch off all the excess fondant on the bottom of the rose to make the roses shorter you might not have to make your fondant strip taller. Carefully place the fondant strip around the sides of the cake, flattening with your hand as you go. Smooth the fondant and trim the edges at the bottom if necessary.
I also made some marbled fondant using ivory and chocolate fondant. Roll out each colour into a log, place them side by side and twist the colours together like a breadstick. Twist and fold it a few times and until you have the marbling effect desired. Roll it out.
I used a frill cutter to emboss the tiny hearts and cut 1/3 inch tall strips. I brushed the strips with some water on the back and glued them to the cake at the top and bottom as seen in the pictures.
Arrange the fondant roses on the cake and you’re done :)!