Saturday, May 31, 2008

cakes and sandwiches

It has been a busy few days, with my last big baking session before I start a new job in the area of nutrition...all things in moderation!

Today there was a fundraising event on at Claremont Estate, a boutique lodge on a farm in Waipara, where I cooked the summer before last. My presence at the event today was in the form of the 'cake and sandwich lady' - a change from my usual market pseudonym of 'pudding girl'.

Here are some of the treats I made. I was a little over enthusiastic with regard to quantities required, however sold most of my wares with the exception of the sticky gingerbread which is on the menu for pudding with friends tomorrow night. It will be joined by some pears poached in mulled wine and a little creme anglaise for good measure.

Louise cake - my pride and joy of the stall today. I have actually never made this before and was a little worried when it came to cutting as the base mixture seemed very dry when raw. But Alison H didn't let me down - this was delicious (and I didn't think I liked Louise cake). The recipe can be found here.

Here, displayed on my new cake stand, an early birthday present (any offers?!) is from top to bottom - chocolate and almond truffle slice (a disaster rehash - more later), Louise cake, date and caramello slice.

I did a rerun of Dorie's sticky buns - this time using local walnuts along with the honey glaze, which worked well with the flavour of the honey. These turned out super sticky and required a strong coffee to wash them down. Now regretting bartering the last few with the coffee cart shall have to be weet-bix for breakfast instead.
The winner on the day - Oaty Ginger Crunch - the base is a bit like an anzac biscuit, so very good. Not so much crunchy but chewy. For once my icing worked perfectly and didn't crack at all when cutting it!

The club sandwiches mistakenly didn't get a look in while I did the whip around with the camera, the little cakes somehow seemed more appealing...

I really do need to think of a more creative gluten free option - although these little cakes are also enjoyed by wider members of the public. The moussey lemon curd cream and crunchy candied orange zest makes them - lovely with the squidgy cakes and ever so slightly pudding-like.

Banana cakes a la Belinda Jeffrey - the best recipe ever and all made in the food processor. Buy a copy of Mix and Bake today. Featuring banana chips that required numerous shopping expeditions to track down. (Odd but true)

...and now to bed, early rising is on the agenda tomorrow for the Christchurch Marathon - which I shall be attending in purely a spectator/supporter role, marathons of the baking kind being my preference.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

sunday lunch

While in Christchurch last weekend we had been keen to check out the temporary restuarant set up by Richard Till, however this had sold out, so we decided to visit a newish place on the dining scene down here - Petrini. A wine bar, resturant and deli with a bakery and cheese room on site, Petrini has been executed superbly.

We ate the calamari with squid ink sauce pictured above (which has a fancier name that escapes me...) and the ham hock terrine with homemade brioche and an apple salad below. Beautiful - the calamari was among the nicest I have had. We also tried the bread plate to check out their breads, the walnut was divine. Very reasonable prices for the quality of the food, and the casual style of the menu makes it perfect for sharing too.

brioche two ways

This weeks TWD recipe was for Pecan Honey Sticky Buns and was chosen by Madam Chow of Madam Chows Kitchen. I have a recipe for sticky buns I use regularly, when I used to sell them at the farmer's market. These have an avid fan base, but I now have a new favourite recipe! I made these on a busy day, in between rushing around sorting things for my own wedding and attending another, so did not get to enjoy them in an ideal, sit down with a good coffee kind of way. Instead they were picked at off and on through the course of the day....and were surprisingly good the next day when warmed a little.

These sticky buns are made with a brioche dough. I have never come across this method of making brioche, where the butter is mixed into the otherwise finished dough, piece by piece. The poor Kitchenaid was well and truly put through its paces, but it was definitely worthwhile. The recipe calls for a half batch of brioche - I made the whole batch, figuring it was just as easy effortwise to pump out a full batch at once - and used the other half to make some brioche raisin snails. In the end I ended up making only a half batch of the sticky buns (the rest is in the freezer for a more suitably lazy day) as the dough goes a surprisingly long way...which assists to justify the amount of butter in the recipe - not quite so scary when you divide it on a bun by bun basis!
The picture below is how they look when baking - you pour the glaze into the pan and then sit the dough on top of this, let them rise, bake them, then flip the whole tray over once they are cooked.

These sticky buns were incredibly light - I loved the texture of the dough. Brioche can sometimes be quite dry with a coarse crumb, but not this recipe. You could really taste the honey in the glaze, which was good with the nuts. However I think the amount of glaze was a bit intense for the number of buns. Next time I would do a quarter recipe of glaze for a half batch, as opposed to the half recipe used this time. They were just too sticky and sweet (never thought that possible!) and the dough was so lovely in its own right.

Here they are close up in all their glorious stickiness. Beautiful.

With the other half of the brioche dough I made up some brioche raisin snails, a recipe baked by the other TWD bakers before I joined. These have a layer of vanilla pastry cream, topped with rum soaked raisins and a little cinnamon sugar. I only baked a couple and froze the rest of the roll to use later, so didn't bother icing them with the glaze - which I would definitely do next time as I think it would finish them off perfectly, as they needed a little more sweetness. (Or perhaps only as I was eating mouthfuls of this in between mouthfuls of the super sweet sticky bun?!) These were lovely too - the brioche is so light and they have just enough moisture from the custard and raisins.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

a slab of snickery square

Ever since buying the book Baking: from my home to yours, by Dorie Greenspan I have wanted to try this recipe. It promises to be, as the name suggests, a glorified snickers bar. Or the ultimate caramel slice; shortbread base, a layer of extra thick, gooey, 'proper' caramel embellished with caramelised salted peanuts, and a thick layer of dark chocolate to finish. My sister's upcoming 21st birthday provided the necessary excuse to embark on such wickedness...

The recipe specifies using dulce de leche (spanish for caramelised/sweet milk) for the caramel layer, however this is not available in NZ. Highlander sell a condensed milk product that is caramelised, but I don't think this compares to the DIY version where you boil the can of sweetened condensed milk in a saucepan of water or 3-4 hours. This is how is looks after being 'cooked' - a lovely thick toffee coloured goo. Maybe dulce de leche is thicker, as my slice didn't look quite like Dorie's when I cut it...the caramel oozed out the sides quite determinedly. Not to say this detracts from the eating experience at all, it just makes it rather messier.

This is wickedly good. The texture of the candied peanuts is what makes it I think - salted, roasted peanuts (I dusted them with a little flaky pacific seasalt) with a thin crisp caramel shell. That, and the thick dark chocolate slab like topping and the crumbly, biscuity base, all work beautifully to contrast with the creamy caramel. The messy side trimmings I combined with some leftover whipped cream and sliced banana - like a banoffee pie version of eton mess. So good albeit slightly shameful...

Here is a close up that shows the true 'gooeyness' of the filling, it wants to gush out in much the same manner as a perfectly ripe cheese...Due to this fact it probably wasn't the best choice of baked good to attempt to send to the other end/side of the South Island. So instead of cutting this up I left it as a whole slab, hoping this would enhance the chances of it remaining intact for the next 24 hours.

And here is the slab of snickery square snugly packed in its little box, ready to make the journey south. Fingers crossed it made it safely!

Snickery Squares
Do not be put off by the longwinded directions - this is really quite easy!

For the Crust:

1 cup all-purpose flour
¼ cup sugar
2 Tbsp powdered sugar
¼ tsp salt
100g unsalted butter, cut into small pieces and chilled
1 large egg yolk, lightly beaten

For the Filling:

½ cup sugar
3 tbsp water
1 ½ cups salted peanuts
About 1 ½ cups store-bought dulce de leche (I used 2 x tins condensed milk, cooked for 3 hours in boiling water)

For the Topping:
200g bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped (I used Cadbury Old Gold)
50g unsalted butter

Getting Ready:

Preheat oven to 350F. Butter a 8 inch square pan and put it on a baking sheet.

To Make the Crust:

Toss the flour, sugar, powdered sugar and salt into a food processor and pulse a few times to combine. Toss in the pieces of cold butter and pulse about 12 times, until the mixture looks like coarse meal. Pour the yolk over the ingredients and pulse until the dough forms clumps and curds-stop before the dough comes together in a ball.Turn the dough into the buttered pan and gently press it evenly across the bottom of the pan. Prick the dough with a fork and slide the sheet into the oven.Bake the crust for 15-20 minutes, or until it takes on just a little color around the edges. Transfer the pan to a rack and cool to room temperature before filling.

To Make the Filling:

Have a parchment or silicone mat-lined baking sheet at the ready, as well as a long-handled wooden spoon and a medium heavy bottomed saucepan.Put the sugar and water in the saucepan and cook over medium-high heat, stirring, until the sugar dissolves. Keeping the heat fairly high, continue to cook the sugar, without stirring, until it just starts to color. Toss the peanuts and immediately start stirring. Keep stirring, to coat the peanuts with sugar. Within a few minutes, they will be covered with sugar and turn white—keep stirring until the sugar turns back into caramel. When the peanuts are coated with a nice deep amber caramel, remove the pan from the heat and turn the nuts out onto the baking sheet., using the wooden spoon to spread them out as best you can. Cool the nuts to room temperature.When they are cool enough to handle, separate the nuts or break them into small pieces. Divide the nuts in half. Keep half of the nuts whole or in biggish pieces for the filling, and finely chop the other half for the topping.Spread the dulce de leche over the shortbread base and sprinkle over the whole candied nuts.

To Make the Topping:

Melt the chocolate in a heatproof bowl set over a saucepan of barely simmering water. Remove chocolate from the heat and gently stir in the butter, stirring until it is fully blended into the chocolate.Pour the chocolate over the dulce de leche, smoothing it with a long metal icing spatula, then sprinkle over the rest of the peanuts. Slide the pan into the fridge to set the topping, about 20 minutes; if you’d like to serve the squares cold, keep them refrigerated for at least 3 hours before cutting.

pears and gingerbread for breakfast

A week or so ago we had our engagement party, so with a few extras for breakfast it seemed a good time to do a little recipe testing. I have had my eye on this gingerbread waffle recipe for a long time, but waffles are a little time consuming to attempt on an everyday basis.

These were lovely but not gingery enough for me, being named as they are after gingerbread. Next time I would add another teaspoon of ground ginger, some mixed spice and treacle instead of golden syrup to make them more like gingerbread. The recipe contains no butter, so they were a little less crisp than waffles usually are, I would probably add a little melted butter too.

We ate them with some pears fresh from the orchard that were poached with some leftover white wine, caster sugar, water and a vanilla pod.

With greek yoghurt and a drizzle of fig leaf syrup these made a nice start to the day.

gingerbread waffles - from Everyday Coking by Allan Campion and Michelle Curtis

1 1/3 c self raising flour
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp ground cloves
4 eggs, separated
1 c milk
1/4 c brown sugar
1/4 c golden syrup

Sift together the dry ingredients. Beat egg whites til stiff. Beat together the yolks with the milk, brown sugar and golden syrup until smooth. Add the egg yolk mixture to the sifter dry ingredients and stir until combined. Fold in the egg whites as gently as you can.

Cook spoonfuls of mixture in a lightly oiled waffle iron (or make hotcakes in a pan). Serve with syrup and fruit.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

a variation on a theme...

This weeks TWD recipe is for madeleines, the little shell shaped cakes...but as these need a special mould to be baked in (and specialist bakeware stores are a little thin on the ground in this part of the country - that is, non existent!) there was the option to choose a recipe already baked by other members of the group.

The most appealing recipe of those baked before I joined TWD would have to be Snickery squares - they look like, as the name suggests, a homemade and far superior version of a snickers bar, or a deluxe caramel square. Both of which I am partial to. However with only two mouths to feed this week (mine included) a batch of Snickery squares simply seemed too excessive.

Instead I made a more modest choice, the Pecan sour cream biscuits (scones in NZ speak) and decided to use the dough to make a cobbler topping, and serve it as a pudding. Possessing no pecans but several kilograms of sliced almonds, I substituted a handful of the latter. The fruit base was sliced braeburn apples and some boysenberries I had frozen in summer.

I had read good things about this recipe on other TWDer's blogs, however my cobbler version of this recipe failed to impress. This is probably due to the variations I made (such as cooking it over a base of hot fruit!) and a bit of heavy handedness with the mixing, and possibly undercooking it slightly, but I found the dough to be quite dense and a little stodgy. Too rib sticking for my liking. The crunchy part on top was quite nice though, especially with whipped cream and the fruit.

I ended up picking the topping off the leftovers and feeding it to the compost, the fruit at the bottom was salvaged and made a pleasant addition to my muesli this morning.

Bring on the Snickery Squares!! Should have followed my instincts. Check out the rest of the recipes made this week here.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

not so naughty brownie

Flicking through the Healthy Food Guide website I came across this recipe for a fat free brownie - the recipe is here. The picture in the magazine looked pretty good, and despite being skeptical of a brownie recipe containing no butter or eggs I decided to give it a chance. (With the outrageous price of butter a brownie recipe that is 'healthyish' and cheap would be a bonus...) The recipe uses apple puree as a fat substitute, which I like the idea of. However with this being the only wet ingredient the mixture was way too dry so I succumbed to the temptation to add an egg. Instead of the specified walnuts and dark chocolate I added raspberries and white chocolate.

It is important to note that this is most definitely not a brownie. It was quite spongy and the top felt a bit rubbery, it didn't get that fudgy crumb and papery crust that the genuine article has. It tasted ok in a run of the mill chocolate cake kind of way, but I am definitely of the school of thought where you indulge less often but do it properly...

beans on toast

A trip to the local (and only) supermarket proved to be a sobering experience upon sighting the prices of fresh vegetables...lettuce and broccoli almost reaching the $4 mark! The lack of a fruit and vegetable shop or Farmers Market on the West Coast is a real shame. Luckily tinned tomatoes and store cupboard staples like beans remain cheap, hence the inspiration for lunch today.

Baked Beans

1/2 red onion, diced
1 clove garlic, crushed
2 rashers streaky bacon, diced
2 cans cannellini beans
1 1/ c tomato passata
1 tsp dijon mustard
1 tsp worcestershire sauce
1 tbsp brown sugar
1 bay leaf
1/2 tsp sweet smoked paprika

Cook the onion in a little oil until soft, add the bacon and garlic and continue to cook gently. Add the beans (drain and rise well) and the remaining ingredients and stir well. Cook over a gentle heat for ten minutes.

We ate the beans with cornbread. This version is made at the Morrison St cafe in Nelson - you can find the recipe here. It is a bit like a cheese scone, but with a coarser texture from the polenta. I halved the recipe which still filled a large loaf tin. This cornbread is nice toasted the next day too.

Friday, May 16, 2008

the perfect pikelet?

Too late for breakfast but too early for lunch, I felt like something a little bit sweet. I had seen a recipe for pikelets in an Alison Holst book that she claims are 'the best pikelets I have ever tasted'. A pretty big claim but then AH has a similarly big reputation so I thought I would try them out. I usually use a Jo Seagar recipe for pikelets that makes nice thick ones. (Nobody likes a mean skinny pikelet!) Alison's recipe was possibly nicer as the pikelets were still fatly risen but a bit lighter and more tender. Both use cream of tartar which I think must be the secret ingredient. A jar of Moutere Gold citrus and passionfruit curd provided the perfect topping.

Here is the inside of the pikelet, you can see how lovely and light the batter is.
Mrs James' pikelets (c/o Alison Holst)
25g butter
1 tbsp golden syrup
1/2 c sugar
2 eggs
3/4 c milk
1 1/2 c flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cream of tartar
Melt the butter in the bowl you will mix pikelets in. Add the golden syrup and warm again. Add sugar and eggs and whisk well, stir in milk. Sift in dry ingredients and mix only to combine - it is important not to overmix at this stage. Cook spoonfuls in a lightly greased pan and serve with the delicious jam of your choice.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

one of my favourite places...

Riverstone Kitchen is one of my favourite cafes. Just north of Oamaru, this is one of those rare cafes that does everything well. The food is simple and delicious, it is one of those places you can feel confident that anything you order will be good. I had duck confit on jerusalem artichoke puree with spinach (a bargain - $17!). Mum had the beef pie (which came with champ and caramelised onions) and is one of the best around, we took a couple of extra away with us...

The chocolate tart with vanilla bean ice cream was stunning. The filling was like that used when making molten chocolate cakes, and is baked to order, resulting in a light crust on the top and a lovely gooey inside that melts out onto the plate when broken into. Perfect.

At Riverstone they have large gardens and orchards where lots of their produce is grown. Here is an autumnal looking pile of pumpkins piled outside the front door to the cafe.

Then it was on to Dunedin for a cooking class with Judith Cullen (more later...) and a stop off at the 'Friday' shop at Highgate Bridge to collect several chicken and mushroom pies on order from various Friday shop pie lovers in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch! This place is fantastic. They bake all week, quite traditional french things - terrines, braises, confit and pate. Pastry is definitely the star of the show however with sweet and savoury tarts, quiches and pies of all kinds on offer. You need to be in early for the pain au chocolat but the pear tart with frangipane = divine.

a flurry of figs

In the weekend I was the lucky recipient of a bowl of figs, thanks to a friend of Mum's that has a tree and doesn't care for them. (There were many more - this is the remainder that was turned into jam). The bowl is my newest addition to my Tony Sly collection of beautiful things to put food in and on.

Roasted figs with fig leaf syrup. We ate these with gingerbread waffles and poached pears for breakfast (more about that later). The fig leaf syrup comes from the Dunsandel Store. It has a flavour that is hard to describe. It is lovely, not too sweet and less cloying than maple syrup or honey.

Fig and lemon jam - inspired by the new book Pick, Preserve, Serve by Chris Fortune. A good little book with nice ideas for contemporary preserves...the lemon in this is delicious, it really lifts the flavour. I cut the figs into wedges so they stayed nice and chunky. I think it will be perfect in a crostata with some sliced apples.

Pizza with caramelised red onion, blue cheese, fig and walnut. Self explanatory.

lime and coconut

This weeks TWD recipe is Florida pie, a twist on lemon meringue pie as it is made instead with lime juice and coconut. I used Krispie biscuits to make the crust - unique to NZ I think, Krispies are, as the name suggests, crisp coconut biscuits. These made a great base, light and very crunchy and a little bit crumbly.

I added the zest of the limes as well as the juice to cut through the sweetness of the condensed milk.

I made one large pie and half a dozen baby ones - which look cute in a rustic kind of way but ended up a bit of a mess as they proved impossible to remove from the tins...

Anna (Apple) was gifted this pie to take to a dinner date, however due to a miscommunication and strange coincidence her host had already prepared a lemon meringue pie. What was the verdict Apple? The filling had too many coconutty 'bits' in it for me, I found it a bit stringy in that respect, but would try it again perhaps using coconut cream instead to keep the coconut flavour but with a smoother texture.

Florida Pie

1 9-inch graham cracker crust (page 235), fully baked and cooled, or a store-bought crust
1 1/3 cups heavy cream
1 1/2 cups shredded sweetened coconut
4 large eggs, separated
1 14-ounce can sweetened condensed milk
1/2 cup fresh Key (or regular) lime juice (from about 5 regular limes)
1/4 cup of sugar

Getting Ready:Center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Put the pie plate on a baking sheet lined with parchment of a silicone mat.Put the cream and 1 cup of the coconut in a small saucepan and bring it to a boil over medium-low heat, stirring almost constantly. Continue to cook and stir until the cream is reduced by half and the mixture is slightly thickened. Scrape the coconut cream into a bowl and set it aside while you prepare the lime filling.Working with a stand mixer, preferably fitted with a paddle attachment, or with a hand mixer in a large bowl beat the egg yolks at high speed until thick and pale. Reduce the mixer speed to low and beat in the condensed milk. Still on low, add half of the lime juice. When it is incorporated, add the reaming juice, again mixing until it is blended. Spread the coconut cream in the bottom of the graham cracker crust, and pour over the lime filling.Bake the pie for 12 minutes. Transfer the pie to a cooling rack and cool for 15 minutes, then freeze the pie for at least 1 hour.

To Finish the Pie with Meringue:Put the 4 egg whites and the sugar in a medium heavy-bottomed saucepan and heat over medium-low heat, whisking all the while, until the whites are hot to the touch. Transfer the whites to a stand mixer, fitted with the whisk attachment, or use a hand mixer in a large bowl, and beat the whites at high speed until they reach room temperature and hold firm peaks. Using a rubber spatula, fold the remaining 1/2 cup coconut into the meringue.Spread the meringue over the top of the pie, and run the pie under the broiler until the top of the meringue is golden brown. (Or, if you've got a blowtorch, you can use it to brown the meringue.) Return the pie to the freezer for another 30 minutes or for up to 3 hours before serving.

soup and scenery

Here is some scenery to prove it is West Coast Kitchen. We paid a vist to Lake Brunner the other weekend, lovely, the new Wanaka perhaps? Lunch was a picnic near the lake of alphabet soup featuring homegrown vegetables and rosemary bread sticks. Good comfort food.

Alphabet soup

Soften a chopped onion and garlic in some olive oil. Add diced carrot, potato, pumpkin or vegetabes as desired, and a jar of tomato passata. Pour over a couple of cups of vege or chicken stock and simmer for twenty minutes or so unil the potatoes are nearly cooked through. Add a handful of 'alphabeto' pasta and some diced courgettes and simmer until pasta is cooked. Stir through shredded silverbeet or spinach to finish.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

chocolate and peanut butter overload

The TWD recipe this week was for Peanut butter Chocolate Torte...I am a huge peanut butter fan and also a huge chocolate fan but find the peanut butter and chocolate combination thing a bit much. This was a fun dessert to make though, and the reason I enjoy Tuesdays with Dorie as it means I try recipes I normally wouldn't!

I halved the recipe and made 4 little tortes. I could have easily stretched it to 6 tortes by making smaller portions, but that would not have been in the nature of this recipe which demands to look decadent and over the top rather than sensible I think.

The mousse was a good consistency and once chilled a little was easy to pipe into the tartlet cases. I was pleased with my was woth being patient and waiting for the exact moment when it thickened enough to cover the mousse perfectly without turning into a landslide.

I found the cookie crumb base very crumbly to work with and was tempted to add more butter, but after freezing and baking as specified they worked perfectly and came out of their tins obediently enough without requiring the use of a hairdryer...

Here is Miriam and Phil tucking into a torte (in real life they had one each!) Feedback regarding tortes = good but rich and would be perfect if made in mini muffin tins and served with coffee as little afterdinner mouthfuls...a bit like a homemade Reece's peanut butter cup.

Peanut Butter Torte

1 ¼ c. finely chopped salted peanuts (for the filling, crunch and topping)
2 teaspoons sugar
½ teaspoon instant espresso powder (or finely ground instant coffee)
¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
½ c. mini chocolate chips (or finely chopped semi sweet chocolate)
24 Oreo cookies, finely crumbed or ground in a food processor or blender
½ stick (4 tablespoons) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
Small pinch of salt
2 ½ c. heavy cream
1 ¼ c confectioners’ sugar, sifted
12 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
1 ½ c salted peanut butter – crunchy or smooth (not natural; I use Skippy)
2 tablespoons whole milk
4 ounces bittersweet chocolate finely chopped

Getting ready: center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 350°F. Butter a 9-inch Springform pan and place it on a baking sheet lined with parchment or a silicone mat.
Toss ½ cup of the chopped peanuts, the sugar, espresso powder, cinnamon, nutmeg and chocolate chops together in a small bowl. Set aside.
Put the Oreo crumbs, melted butter and salt in another small bowl and stir with a fork just until crumbs are moistened. Press the crumbs evenly over the bottom and up the sides of the spring form pan (they should go up about 2 inches on the sides). Freeze the crust for 10 minutes.
Bake the crust for 10 minutes, then transfer it to a rack and let it cool completely before filling.
Working with a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment or with a hand mixer in a large bowl, whip 2 cups of the cream until it holds medium peaks. Beat in ¼ cup of the confectioners’ sugar and whip until the cream holds medium-firm peaks. Crape the cream into a bowl and refrigerate until needed.
Wipe out (do not wash) the bowl, fit the stand mixer with the paddle attachment if you have one, or continue with the hand mixer, and beat the cream cheese with the remaining 1 cup confectioners’ sugar on medium speed until the cream cheese is satiny smooth. Beat in the peanut butter, ¼ cup of the chopped peanuts and the milk.
Using a large rubber spatula, gently stir in about one quarter of the whipped cream, just to lighten the mousse. Still working with the spatula, stir in the crunchy peanut mixture, then gingerly fold in the remaining whipped cream.
Scrape the mouse into the crust, mounding and smoothing the top. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours, or overnight; cover with plastic wrap as soon as the mousse firms.
To Finish The Torte: put the chopped chocolate in a heatproof bowl and set the bowl over a saucepan of simmering water. Leave the bowl over the water just until the chocolate softens and starts to melt, about 3 minutes; remove the bowl from the saucepan.
Bring the remaining ½ cup cream to a full boil. Pour the cream over the chocolate and , working with a a rubber spatula, very gently stir together until the ganache is completely blended and glossy.
Pour the ganache over the torte, smoothing it with a metal icing spatula. Scatter the remaining ½ cup peanuts over the top and chill to set the topping, about 20 minutes.
When the ganache is firm, remove the sides of the Springform pan; it’s easiest to warm the pan with a hairdryer, and then remove the sides, but you can also wrap a kitchen towel damped with hot water around the pan and leave it there for 10 seconds. Refrigerate until ready to serve.