Last year I developed a special double chocolate marquis for my friend BKs milestone birthday (see BKs Choco-Tectural Marquis.)  Over the past year I have made it numerous times and while it is always well received I couldn’t help but think that it just needed some tweaking, so I set about playing around with it and I think I finally have it to where I want it.  Since the two under flavors were orange and hazelnut, I decided that it was these flavors that needed punching up. They just seemed to be overwhelmed by the chocolate flavor.  This time I used 5 ounces of the orange flavored Maya Gold chocolate and 5 1/2 ounces of the 60% dark chocolate.  I also added the grated zest of an orange.  To augment the hazelnut flavor, I increased the amount of hazelnuts to 1/4 cup and added 3 tablesoons of Frangelico to punch the nut flavor up.  This was for the brownie cake layer base.  The mouse layer was milk chocolate since BK had professed a liking for milk chocolate and I decided to leave the mousse layer untouched because I didn’t think the suble milk chocolate interfered with the rich brownie base. I also liked the marked contrast in the two layers. I think I acheived what I set out to do.  Just to give it that extra nudge over the top, I put the whole thing under a caramel dome.  I think the nutty flavor of the caramel enhances the hazelnut flavor in the cake base.  The cake is very rich so the cage can certainly be omitted without taking away from the overall flavors of the finished cake.  The cake is very rich so serve it in small portions with a glass of Frangelico or Nocello.  Enjoy!

Don’t be discouraged, the dome is not hard.  A few tricks are to make sure that the mold is very well buttered.  Once your caramel is to the color of your choice, remove it from the heat and keep testing it with a spoon.  You are looking for a heavy thread falling off the end of hte spoon.  This is the indication that it is ready to go on the mold.  If it is too hot it will burn the butter and it will stick to the mold.  ALlow the mold to cool for a minute or so.  The caramel should still be warm to the touch but firm enough to hold its shape.  Begin at the edge and gently push the caramel toward the top to get it to loosen.  Once it begins to loosen, turn the mold right side up and gently push from the egde to release the dome from the mold.  It is very fragile so be extremely careful once you get it released from the mold. 

Just so you know I was listening BK