Mont Blanc and Vesuvius Cakes
Chestnuts and autumn belong together
We are making an excursion to the snow-capped Mont Blanc and the volcanic Mount Vesuvius. These two little chestnut cakes are reminiscent of some very famous mountains. My recipe might look like a bit complicated, but do not be scared, it isn’t. Simply follow the instructions. Don’t miss a single step, it is worth the effort!
Chestnuts are native to temperate regions of the Northern Hemisphere and a typical autumn-harvested nut. I like that smell of chestnuts roasting on an open fire at almost every corner at wintertime. It can be used as garnish, desserts or soup. Chestnuts are also indispensable for the stuffing of the Christmas turkey. This is not the first time I share a chestnut dessert with you. Try my paleo chestnut roll too!
These starchy nuts pack in a surprising dose of fiber, vitamin C, and important minerals like copper and potassium. Chestnuts contain complex carbohydrates, which your body digests slowly for a stable energy source. Foods high in fiber and complex carbs also have a less immediate effect on blood sugar. Copper helps form red blood cells. Like vitamin C, this trace mineral supports the health of your blood vessels, nerves, immune system, and bones and assists in iron absorption.
You can’t believe how many times I tried to make a good meringue. Sometimes it was an absolutely disaster. I don’t use refined sugar and sweeteners don’t work the same way, probably that was the fault. I tried with maple syrup, but the color was not absolutely white.
Finally I figured it out with honey. And I made Swiss meringue. I whisked egg whites with honey on a low heat stove. You have to be careful with the heat, otherwise you will end up with scrambled eggs. This time I could make nice snow-white meringue. It was soft inside. When you bite this little cake, you find a nice surprise under the chestnut cream and whipped coconut cream.
Make Mont Blanc and Vesuvius Cakes if you want to impress your guests!
Mont Blanc and Vesuvius Cakes
- 2 large egg white
- 2 tbsp honey
- 1 pinch salt
Whisked coconut cream
- 1 tin coconut milk 400 ml tin, we will use only the cream from the top
- 2 tsp honey
- ½ tsp konjac flour
- 6 large eggs separated
- 50 gram xylitol or erythritol powder
- 50 gram cocoa powder
- 1 pinch salt
- 500 gram chestnut pre-cooked and unsweetened
- 2 tbsp coconut oil melted
- 3 tbsp honey
- 6 tbsp almond cream or 4 tbsp almond milk
- 1 tbsp vanilla extract
- 1 tbsp golden rum
- 1 pinch salt
- 50 gram melted chocolate
- 12 pcs cherry compote
- xylitol powder
- Make the meringue first. Preheat the oven to 90°C. Line a baking tray with parchment paper.
- Mix room temperature egg whites and honey in a medium size pot.
- Turn the stove on to the lowest heat possible.
- Whisk the egg white-honey mixture with electric hand mixer permanently for 4-6 minutes, on the stove, until stiff and glossy peaks form. Take it off the stove.
- Draw 5 cm circles to the parchment paper on the baking tray. Fill a pastry bag with the meringue and use a 5 mm round tip or cut a 5 mm hole at the end of the pastry bag.
- Pipe meringue “mountains” 5 cm in diameter onto the lined baking tray. Bake for 90 minutes.
- Allow to cool for 1 hour.
- While meringue is in the oven, make the whisked coconut cream second. (It’s better to put coconut milk tin to the fridge for few hours, it’s easier to separate the cream from the milk if it’s hard.)
- Separate the cream from the milk and put it into a bowl.
- Add 2 tsp honey and whisk until peaks form. If it’s too runny, add ¼ konjac flour and continue to whisk. If it’s still not good enough, add ¼ tsp konjac flour again. Not more, that will be enough! Whisk it again!
- Put whisked coconut cream into the fridge for 30 minutes, its texture will be good for piping.
- You have enough time to make the chestnut cream after the whisked coconut cream, while meringue is in the oven. Place cooked chestnut, coconut oil, almond cream, honey, vanilla extract, rum and pinch of salt in food processor and let it run for 6-8 minutes untill the mixture is absolutely creamy. If it’s not creamy enough, add 1 tsp coconut cream more.
- Don’t put it into the fridge, leave on room temperature.
- Make the cocoa batter base. Preheat the oven to 175°C. Prepare a 30 x 33 cm baking tray with non-stick reusable tin liner, if you don’t have it, replace with parchment paper.
- Beat the egg whites with a pinch of salt in a big bowl with electric hand mixer until the peaks stand straight up.
- Mix egg yolks with xylitol/erythritol in another big bowl until it is light yellow and airy.
- Add cocoa powder to the egg yolk mixture and mix it with a kitchen spoon.
- Add beaten egg whites to cocoa mixture and fold it carefully with kitchen spoon, to not break the egg white foam.
- Smooth the batter into the baking tray and bake for 12 minutes.
- Remove from the oven, allow to cool for 15-20 minutes.
- Cut circles with 7cm diameter cooking or pastry ring.
- Melt the chocolate in Bain Marie/double boiler.
- Set the Mont Blanc and Vesuvius mini cakes. Place the cocoa sponge circles to serving plate. Put the meringue “mountains” to the middle of them. Pipe whipped coconut cream around the meringue then pipe chestnut cream around the whipped coconut cream.
- Spoon melted chocolate to the top of Vesuvius and decorate with cherry compote. Drizzle xylitol powder to Mont Blanc.
- It sounds a bit complicated, but it is not that, follow the instructions! Enjoy!
I loved your recipes, especially this. I love konjac, and I might try to cook the cream; I’m also using locust bean gum to make things creamier—just a suggestion—many thanks.
Dear Judith, thank you very much for your nice comment! So great to get to hear you like my recipes. I like to use konjac flour but I will try it with locust bean gum (St.John bread) also. Thanks for suggestion.