Purple Ombre Cake

For obvious reasons, this Purple Ombre Cake was the centerpiece of the entire 1000th Post Party last weekend. It stole the show. I kept it in the fridge while all the savory treats were being consumed so that it wouldn’t distract everyone from the awesome food they were eating. But that didn’t work. Inevitably, someone had to open the fridge to get a new bottle of champagne, and then the exclamations of amazement started.

Purple Ombre Cake

I have to admit, I’m very proud of how this cake turned out. I wasn’t really sure how it would go. I knew I could do it, but I was worried I’d be frustrated with the decorating. As I have mentioned many times before, decorating a cake is not my strongest skill. Hubby even admitted later that when he saw the inspiration behind the cake, he didn’t think I had it in me. He honestly thought I was being over ambitious.

Don’t get me wrong, this is an ambitious cake. Four layers of cake, all a different gradient of purple, covered in roses, again piped in varying shades of purple. But believe me, with a little planning, and some practice, anyone can make this cake. I have a few tips on some things not to do, and some things to do when considering making this cake.

Purple Ombre Cake

1. Don’t forget the sugar in two of the cake layers. This cake method is a bit different than most. Most cakes start with creaming butter and sugar. Not this one. It’s more like mixing biscuits. You add the butter to the dry ingredients before adding the liquid ingredients. So when your brain goes into autopilot and you mix the flour, baking powder, and salt in a bowl, don’t make the mistake I made and assume that’s all that goes in there! Add the sugar. FYI, I tried stirring in the sugar at the end and baking them because I hate wasting ingredients. The cake looked like cake when it came out of the oven. But it tasted… well, like the sugar was mixed in at the end. It was really sweet. And a little gummy.

So I had to re-bake two of the cake layers. Which means I have 18 egg yolks in my fridge right now. I see a lot of creme brulee in our future.

Purple Ombre Cake

2. Don’t change your mind about the color of your frosting at the end. My original plan was to have the lightest shade of frosting be white. After piping the bottom two rows, I piped the first white rose and decided it was too big of a difference from the previous color. So I scraped that rose off, stirred in some purple food coloring and mixed up the lightest shade that you see in the finished cake. I’m sure you all think it looks fine, but I wish I had done that up front so I could have done the crumb coat in the lightest color. It annoyed the perfectionist in me that you could see specs of white peaking through between the roses.

3. Do mix up the cake batter in two batches. Trust me, you mixer can’t handle a double batch of that batter. To make your life easier, measure everything out for both batches at once. So when you put the flour in the bowl of your mixer, measure the same amount out and put it into another bowl. Then when it’s time to make the second batch, everything is measured and ready to go.

Purple Ombre Cake

4. Do invest in a cake decorating turn table. Hubby is always on my case about the amount of baking gadgets I have. I have been eyeing one of these bad boys for quite some time but I didn’t know where I’d store it. I finally decided to just get one and figure it out later. I’m SO glad I did that. Applying the crumb coat took about 1/3 of the time that it takes without one and it helped when I was piping the roses too. Believe me, it’s worth the $18.

5. Do make this fruit passion curd. I don’t care if you’re intimidated by this cake, if you do nothing else, make the filling. Eat it with a spoon, on a graham cracker, or stuffed into a cupcake. It’s seriously delicious. Goya makes great frozen fruit purees in a variety of flavors. I want to make this curd in every possible flavor available (you can find the purees in the frozen food aisle near the other Hispanic foods). It’s SO simple and delicious.

Purple Ombre Cake

6. Do as much ahead of time as you can. I feel like a broken record here, but the key with layer cakes not becoming too overwhelming is to break things up. I made the curd on Thursday night, baked the cakes on Friday, and made the frosting on Saturday. Then I just had to stack and decorate it before the party.

And last but not least, don’t be intimidated by the roses! They’re very simple to do and with a little practice, you’ll be a pro in no time. Just remember that to pipe roses, you start in the center and make one big swirl from the inside to the outside.

UPDATE: Click here for the Video Tutorial on How to Pipe a Rose

Hubby was shocked to watch me decorate the cake because it honestly took about 15 minutes total. The biggest pain was washing the tip between colors of frosting. And, to convince you guys even further, I’ve recorded a video of how to pipe roses! It needs a smidge of editing over the weekend, and I’m hoping to post it first thing Monday. So be sure to come back for that!

One Year Ago: Hot Cross Buns
Two Years Ago: Raspberry Curd
Three Years Ago: Raspberry Cheesecake Swirl Brownies

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Purple Ombre Cake

Such an impressive cake for any special occasion

Yield: Serves 16-20

Ingredients:

For the Cake Layers
Double batch of White Cupcakes, baked into four 9-inch layers
Food coloring of your choice

For the Passion Fruit Curd
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup cornstarch
1 cup passion fruit nectar or puree - Look in the hispanic aisle in your grocery store - Goya makes all sorts of fruit purees
4 egg yolks
1 vanilla bean - split, seeds scraped
1 stick unsalted butter, cut into tablespoons

For the White Chocolate Buttercream
2 cups unsalted butter, softened
5 cups powdered sugar (or more, depending on desired consistency)
Pinch of salt
12 oz. good quality white chocolate, chopped (not white chocolate chips or candy melts!)
1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
1/2 tsp vanilla
Food coloring of your choice

Directions:

For the Cake Layers
I recommend making the cake twice instead of doubling the recipe. While you're measuring out the ingredients for the cake, just measure out enough for the second batch at the same time so it's easier the second time around.

The first time through, leave one layer white. Add a few drops food coloring to the second layer prior to baking (I used 5 drops in my lightest layer).

When making the third and fourth layers, add a bit more food coloring to each layer such that you'll have gradually darker layers (I used 9 and 18 drops for my darker layers).

Allow all layers to cool completely.

For the Passion Fruit Curd
In a saucepan, whisk the sugar and cornstarch.

Whisk in the passion fruit nectar, egg yolks and vanilla seeds and cook over moderate heat, stirring constantly, until thick, 6 minutes.

Remove from the heat; whisk in the butter, 1 tablespoon at a time, until incorporated.

Scrape the filling into a glass bowl, press a sheet of plastic wrap on the surface and refrigerate until chilled, about 2 hours.

For the Frosting
Put the chopped white chocolate into a small bowl. Heat the chocolate in 30 second increments in the microwave set to 60% power. Stir after each increment, and continue to heat 30 seconds at a time, until the chocolate is melted and smooth. Set aside and allow to completely cool.

Once white chocolate has cooled, sift the salt and powdered sugar over the butter, in a large bowl. Cream the butter and sugar mixture together until light and fluffy, scraping the sides of the bowl as needed.

Measure the whipping cream into a cup, and stir in the vanilla extract.

With the mixer running on low speed, gradually pour the cream mixture the bowl.

Once the cream mixture has been incorporated into the frosting, fold on the melted (but cooled) white chocolate until incorporated.

Increase the mixer speed to medium-high, and beat frosting for an additional 3 minutes.

To Assemble the Cake
Once all of the cake layers have cooled, level each of the layers except the white layer.

Place a small amount of frosting on a cake board to stabilize the cake. Center the darkest layer on the cake board. Pipe a small ring around the edge of the cake layer. This will ensure the filling doesn't spill out between the layers.

Spoon a heaping 1/3 cup filling into center of cake and spread to the edges.

Stack the next lighter cake on top and continue the process until all layers are stacked and the white layer is on top.

Frost the cake with a crumb coat and chill in the fridge for at least an hour.

To Decorate the Cake
Place ~3/4 cup of frosting into two separate bowls (you'll have three bowls of frosting at this point, two with 3/4 cup, and one with the rest, which will be more than 3/4 cup).

The bowl with the most frosting will be your lightest color. Add food coloring to that bowl first until the desired color is reached. Color the other two bowls of frosting such that you have three shades of frosting.

Alternatively, leave all of the frosting one color.

Place the cake on a rotating cake stand. Starting at the bottom, pipe a row of roses along the cake using the darkest frosting color. You're going to pipe three rows of roses, so make sure they cover about 1/3 the height of the cake.

Continue with a second row of roses in the next lighter shade of frosting. Place the roses directly above the bottom layer.

Finish with one last row of roses in the lightest color. Next, decorate the top of the cake by piping a rose in the center of the top of the cake. Work your way around from there piping three circles of roses on the top of the cake.

If there are any large spaces between roses, you can pipe small stars into them to fill the space.

Filling recipe from Kaitlyn in the Kitchen, Frosting recipe from Country Cleaver

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27 Responses to “Chocolate Goat Cheese Mousse Tart”

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    1
    Eva @ Eva Bakes — June 7, 2013 at 8:27 am

    What an awesome way to feature goat cheese in a dessert! I never thought of turning it into a chocolate mousse – sounds like I need to try this soon. 🙂

    • beantownbaker — June 7th, 2013 @ 8:51 am

      You definitely should. I know goat cheese isn’t for everyone, but we really enjoyed the subtle flavor in the mousse.

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    Bianca @ Confessions of a Chocoholic — June 7, 2013 at 8:42 am

    Jen, I love everything about this tart – from the chocolate crust to the mousse and the pretty strawberries on top. Yum! Enjoy your birthday month 🙂

    • beantownbaker — June 7th, 2013 @ 8:52 am

      Thanks for humoring me on the whole birthday month thing 🙂

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    Krystal R. — June 7, 2013 at 1:24 pm

    Ohhh lalalalala, I totally dig this dessert even more because it has goat cheese and strawberries…some of my fave foods!! Happy Birthday month…you better party and eat like it’s your birthday!!

    • beantownbaker — June 7th, 2013 @ 1:52 pm

      Oh I’m definitely going to party like it’s my birthday! All month long 🙂

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    Shannon — June 10, 2013 at 10:24 am

    oh yes to the goat cheese in this tart! fabulous. happy birthday month 🙂 you might need to make this a few more times to celebrate?!

    • beantownbaker — June 10th, 2013 @ 12:09 pm

      Oh I have been baking plenty of deliciousness this month to celebrate 🙂 You know how hard it is to repeat recipes…

  5. #
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    Karen — June 10, 2013 at 11:50 pm

    Love the idea of incorporating goat cheese in a dessert- I have never seen it down with chocolate before. I will definitely be trying this soon as I have some goat cheese in my fridge waiting to be used 🙂

    • beantownbaker — June 11th, 2013 @ 7:20 am

      Oh yea, goat cheese and chocolate go really well together.

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    Carolyn — June 11, 2013 at 8:26 am

    Oh my, the use of goat cheese in this is phenomenal! I would love to try it!

    • beantownbaker — June 11th, 2013 @ 8:46 am

      Definitely do! And you could top it with any fruit you like. I think raspberries would be good too.

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    Consuelo @ Honey & Figs — June 11, 2013 at 9:39 am

    Chocolate must work great with goat cheese since they’re both utterly delicious!! This recipe looks magnificent omg I think I would be able to eat the whole tart by myself *-*

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    Justine @ Cooking and Beer — June 11, 2013 at 1:17 pm

    Goat cheese is one of my favorite ingredients to use in desserts, and your tart looks soooo delicious! Thanks for sharing =) Definitely a must try this summer.

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    Nutmeg Nanny — June 12, 2013 at 10:33 am

    Oh wow this is gorgeous! I love this recipe, I bet it tastes heavenly!

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    Beth — June 25, 2013 at 5:13 pm

    I just finished making my second one for this week…we love it…it is so smooth and rich and well D E L I C I O U S!!!…my grandson requested the second one but truth be told I was gonna make it anyway…the bittersweet chocolate and the cocoa in the crust are what make it….if anyone out there hasn’t tried it do so you will be in love….

    • beantownbaker — June 25th, 2013 @ 5:38 pm

      So glad you’ve enjoyed it! I definitely need to make this again. I have already made it with raspberries but want to try blackberries next.

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    Beth — July 1, 2013 at 6:10 am

    you wont believe it but I made this AGAIN yesterday…I did a play on bananas foster on the top…it was a hit with my company…and good recipes for sweets for the 4th?..lol….

    • beantownbaker — July 3rd, 2013 @ 5:02 pm

      Wow – bananas foster on top. I would never have thought of that! I am making this tart and this strawberry shortcake for the 4th.

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    Shashi @ http://runninsrilankan.com — July 15, 2013 at 11:48 am

    So sinful and delicious looking 🙂

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    NaturesComplete — July 17, 2013 at 1:27 pm

    Holy yumminess. I never thought of putting goat cheese in. My mouth is watering at the thought. Strawberries are my absolute favorite berry of all time. I will have to for sure try this recipe, Got it saved to my personal file. thank you.

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    Laura — August 3, 2013 at 12:07 am

    I love chocolate mousse and I love goat cheese, so clearly I need to make this!

    Also, there is strawberry picking (not sure it is organic though if that matters) up here near Oxford. I can get you the info for next year if driving up here is not a problem (I imagine it depends on what side of Cinci you live 🙂 ).

    • beantownbaker — August 4th, 2013 @ 6:44 pm

      I definitely don’t mind driving for freshly picked strawberries!!

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    Kelly Senyei | Just a Taste — September 20, 2013 at 6:17 am

    I love absolutely EVERYTHING about this recipe! It’s hard to beat mixing tangy goat cheese with chocolate and berries. What a unique recipe!

    • beantownbaker — September 25th, 2013 @ 4:11 pm

      It tastes as good as it sounds! I hope you try it.

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    Lauren — June 1, 2015 at 5:49 pm

    WOW! What a wonderful recipe! Definitely one of my new favorites! Happy birthday month!

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    April — March 1, 2016 at 5:29 pm

    Does this go in the fridge covered or uncovered and how long does it last? Thanks!

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