Well, the cake was received well by all but the birthday girl. What I forgot to consider was that European-style cakes aren’t as sweet as their American counterparts (they seem to be geared toward richness instead). So, despite the points I was awarded on the cake’s technical merits, officially the effort will be put down as a loss. Oh well. The little one is only two. Freudian psychology teaches that traumas like this are usually sublimated in one so young, which is clearly good for me in the short term, though according to the texts she’ll eventually make me pay for my failure by dating a boy with nipple piercings.
As advertised, the cake was moist and delectable. The layers were compact and spongy and not a bit dry, which is my usual complaint with torte-type cakes. The Euro-butter I used in the buttercream had a clean, fresh taste that set the chocolate off extremely well (without the interference of the extra sweetness you could really taste it). One thing I also appreciated about this buttercream was its firmness at room temperature. That was due to the high proportion of chocolate, which, being solid at room temperature, gave extra heft to a frosting that would have been very soft at 70-or-so degrees. The impression you were left with was an intensely flavored chocolate butter that had just been taken out of the refrigerator. Yum and yum.
The firmness also meant it held its shape nicely. It sliced perfectly, cutting into dramatic multi-layer wedges with knife-sharp points. Very geometric and cool, especially with the tilted caramel wedge on top. Tres Moderne!
All in all a success, except of course for the obvious. What the hell am I going to say to that kid?