Heads will turn when you serve this showstopping cake. The mild espresso frosting nicely complements the bittersweet brownie layers.—Megan Byers, Wichita, Kansas
- 2 cups butter, cubed
- 16 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped
- 3 cups sugar
- 8 eggs, lightly beaten
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 2-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- FILLING AND FROSTING:
- 1/4 cup instant espresso powder
- 4 teaspoons boiling water
- 3 cups heavy whipping cream
- 1 cup confectioners' sugar, divided
- 3 teaspoons vanilla extract, divided
- 2 cartons (8 ounces each) Mascarpone cheese
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 1 package (8 ounces) toffee bits
- Grease three 9-in. round baking pans and line with parchment paper; set aside. In a large saucepan, melt butter and chocolate over low heat, stirring often. Remove from the heat; cool.
- In a large bowl, whisk the sugar, eggs, vanilla and chocolate mixture until smooth. Stir in flour and salt until blended. Pour into prepared pans.
- Bake at 350° for 24-28 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes before removing from pans to wire racks to cool completely.
- In a small bowl, dissolve espresso powder in boiling water. In a large bowl, beat cream until soft peaks form. Add 1/3 cup confectioners' sugar, 1 teaspoon vanilla and 2 tablespoons espresso liquid; beat until stiff peaks form. Reserve 1 cup for filling; refrigerate remaining mixture for frosting.
- In another large bowl, combine the cheese, salt, and remaining confectioners' sugar, vanilla and espresso liquid; beat on medium speed for 2 minutes or until fluffy. Fold in reserved whipped cream mixture.
- Place one brownie layer on a serving plate; spread with half of the filling. Repeat layers. Top with third brownie layer; frost top and sides of torte with chilled whipped cream mixture. Sprinkle toffee bits over top and sides of torte. Store in the refrigerator. Yield: 16 servings.
Originally published as Toffee Bar Brownie Torte in Taste of Home Christmas Annual Annual 2012, p138
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