Mulled Wine Chocolate Cake With Orange Mascarpone Cream

Mulled wine chocolate cake with orange mascarpone cream – a perfectly showstopping festive layer cake that tastes like Christmas.

Mulled wine chocolate cake with orange mascarpone cream - a festive showstopper that tastes like Christmas!

Mulled wine chocolate cake with orange mascarpone cream - a festive showstopper that tastes like Christmas!

Have you started thinking about Christmas yet? It still feels too early to me but we food bloggers have to start planning things way in advance so my kitchen has been a full-on festive bombsite for the past couple of weeks. I couldn’t wait long to post this mulled wine chocolate cake with orange mascarpone cream; it is too delicious not to share!

close-up of mulled wine chocolate cake with orange mascarpone frosting, sugared cranberries and chocolate holly leaves.

I adapted my mulled wine chocolate cupcakes recipe to make this cake (please forgive the terrible photos if you visit the post, it is one of my very early ones!). The cakes are made with mulled wine, or just plain red wine if you like. They have a rich, complex flavour with layers of chocolate, spices and wine, and they are perfect with the smooth, creamy, not-too-sweet orange mascarpone cream.

A slice of mulled red wine chocolate cake with orange mascarpone frosting.

I topped the cake with a mulled wine chocolate drip, sugared cranberries and chocolate holly leaves, which turn it into an absolute festive showstopper. The sugared cranberries are very easy to make, and perfectly edible too, I love the little bursts of sharpness against the sweet cake. The way that I make them does involve using raw egg white however, so if that is of a concern then an alternative way to make them that doesn’t involve using egg is to soak them overnight in simple syrup, drain and allow to dry until tacky then roll in granulated sugar.

I will admit that the chocolate holly leaves are a little fiddly and time consuming to make, though they do look good. For a simpler version you could make a batch of gingerbread and use holly shaped cookie cutters to make the leaves instead; halfway through making the chocolate ones I was kind of kicking myself that i hadn’t done just that myself… But however you decide to decorate it, this mulled wine chocolate cake is sure to impress!

close-up of chocolate holly leaves and sugared cranberries

Mulled wine chocolate cake with orange mascarpone cream - a festive showstopper that tastes like Christmas!
5 from 1 vote
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Mulled Wine Chocolate Cake With Orange Mascarpone Cream

Servings 12 people

Ingredients

Mulled Wine Chocolate Cakes:

  • 110 g (1 stick) softened unsalted butter
  • 215 g (1 packed cup + 3 tbsp) dark brown soft sugar
  • 75 g (1/3 cup + 1 tbsp) caster (superfine) sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 270 ml (1 + 1/8 cup) cold mulled wine (or just plain red wine)
  • 200 g (1 + 2/3 cup) plain (all-purpose) flour
  • 65 g (1/2 cup) cocoa powder (Dutch processed)
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp bicarbonate of soda (baking soda)
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp ground cloves
  • 1/4 tsp ground allspice
  • 1/4 tsp ground star anise

Orange Mascarpone Cream:

  • 500 g (17.5oz) full fat mascarpone
  • 300 g (2 cups) icing (powdered) sugar sifted
  • finely grated zest of 2 oranges
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp vanilla bean paste
  • 200 ml (1/2 + 1/3 cup) double (heavy) cream

Chocolate Drip:

  • 50 g (2oz) dark chocolate chopped
  • 25 g (2 Tbsp) butter
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp mulled wine (or red wine)

Sugared Cranberries:

  • couple of handfuls of fresh cranberries
  • 1 egg white
  • 2 tsp granulated sugar
  • granulated sugar for rolling

Chocolate Holly Leaves:

  • 200 g (7oz) dark chocolate chopped
  • about 15 holly leaves, washed and dried

Instructions

Mulled Wine Chocolate Cakes:

  1. Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/gas mark 4. Grease three 15cm/6inch round cake tins and line the bases with baking parchment.

  2. In a large bowl, cream together the butter and sugars until pale and fluffy, beat in the eggs one at a time then the vanilla extract.

  3. In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda, salt and spices.

  4. Fold 1/3 of the dry ingredients into the butter mixture then mix in half of the mulled wine. Add another third of the dry ingredients, the rest of the wine then the rest of the dry ingredients. Fold together until well combined but don't over-beat.

  5. Divide the mixture between the tins and bake for about 25-30 minutes until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. Leave to cool in the tins for 15 minutes then carefully turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely.

Orange Mascarpone Cream:

  1. Place the mascarpone, icing sugar, orange zest, icing sugar, cinnamon and vanilla in a large bowl. Beat with an electric mixer on a low speed until smooth.

  2. Add the cream and whisk at a high speed just until it becomes stiff; be careful not to overmix it. Cover and store in the fridge until needed.

Chocolate Drip:

  1. Place the chopped chocolate and the butter in a bowl set over a pan of gently simmering water and stir until melted. Remove from the heat and stir in the mulled wine. Allow to cool a little before using. If it becomes too thick to pour then it can be gently re-heated until it is pourable.

Sugared Cranberries:

  1. Place the egg white and 2 tsp sugar in a large bowl and whisk with a fork until frothy. Tip in the cranberries and toss to coat. Remove from the bowl and place on a wire rack; set aside for about 1/2 an hour until they have dried slightly but are still tacky then roll in granulated sugar, place on a plate and set aside until dry.

Chocolate Holly Leaves:

  1. Melt the chocolate in a bowl set over a pan of gently simmering water. Use a clean paintbrush to paint the back of the holly leaves with a layer of chocolate then place them in the fridge until set.

  2. Re-warm the chocolate if needed then paint on another coat. Pop the leaves in the freezer until set then very carefully pull the holly leaves away from the chocolate; if you find that they are too delicate then you can add another layer of chocolate and let it set in the freezer before trying again.

Assembly:

  1. Place one of the cake layers on a cake stand or serving platter and spread over some of the mascarpone cream. Top with the second cake and add more mascarpone cream. Place the third cake layer on top upside down so that the surface of the cake is perfectly flat.

  2. Cover the whole cake in a thin layer of cream then pop it in the fridge for half an hour.

  3. Re-warm the chocolate ganache if needed then pour it over the top of the cake, using the back of a spoon to encourage it to drip down the sides. Return the cake to the fridge for 15 minutes then top with a crown of chocolate holly leaves and sugared cranberries and serve. Keep the cake refrigerated.

Slice of spiced red wine chocolate cake with orange mascarpone frosting.

3 Comments on Mulled Wine Chocolate Cake With Orange Mascarpone Cream

  1. Claudia
    November 19, 2017 at 7:49 pm (4 weeks ago)

    Beautiful looking cake! Bet it tastes good as well.

    Reply
  2. Sally
    November 21, 2017 at 8:17 am (3 weeks ago)

    This is a masterpiece Hannah and it must taste delicious

    Reply
  3. Marta Sommer
    December 1, 2017 at 3:58 am (2 weeks ago)

    i love it yummy cake i want to try

    Reply

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