A brownie can sit on my counter for days, untouched. Same goes for a chocolate bar or even a huge slice of chocolate cake. But put a piece of this cake in front of me & I will have a hard time saying no. I probably wouldn't even try.
I made this last weekend for my Mexican themed dinner for a small family get together. I had a slice each day after & it was just so delicious. Although there are layers of chocolate in between ladyfingers & homemade whipped cream, there is something very light about this. The hint of cinnamon is perfect to boot. Make this & your guests will be impressed. Believe me, it looks harder than it is!!!! And it's more delicious than it looks!!!
60 sponge-cake-type ladyfingers (from three 3-oz pkgs)
2 3/4 cups chilled whipping cream
4 oz unsweetened chocolate, chopped
1/4 cup sugar
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons powdered sugar
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 oz semisweet chocolate, grated
Line bottom of 9-inch-diameter springform pan with ladyfingers. Line sides of pan with ladyfingers, standing ladyfingers side by side & rounded side out. Stir 3/4 cup whipping cream, unsweetened chocolate & 1/4 cup sugar in heavy small saucepan over low heat until chocolate melts & mixture is smooth. Remove saucepan from heat & cool to room temperature.
Using electric mixer, beat 1 cup powdered sugar, butter & 1 tsp vanilla in large bowl until blended. Beat in cooled chocolate mixture. Combine remaining 2 cups cream, 2 tblsp powdered sugar, 1 tsp vanilla & cinnamon in another large bowl. Using clean dry beaters, beat until peaks form. Fold half of whipped cream mixture into chocolate mixture.
Spread half of chocolate filling in ladyfinger-lined pan. Top with layer of ladyfingers, then remaining chocolate filling. Pipe or spread remaining whipped cream mixture over filling. Sprinkle with grated semisweet chocolate. Refrigerate until firm, at least 3 hours. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Cover and keep refrigerated.) Remove pan sides from cake & serve.
The original recipe doesn't state this but when laying the ladyfingers down, you will want to cut small pieces to fit where you need it (see above). Once I line the sides of the pan with the ladyfingers I plug up any small holes. This time I was so efficient at it that I had no ladyfingers left. In the past I always did.
Also, when whipping the whipped cream, be patient. It can take about 5 minutes. Once you see the peaks forming stop. If you continue to whip then it will curdle on you. If this happens, the taste is still fine but it just won't look as pretty.