When you're in the mood for a decadent dessert that's out of this world, DaVee Harned's Moon Cake from Millers All Day in Charleston, South Carolina will definitely hit the spot. With four layers of graham cracker cake floating in marshmallow meringue and covered in chocolate ganache, this cake is certainly a crowd pleaser and perfect for any special occasion ... or just a decadent Monday afternoon snack.
For the Graham Cracker Cake:
Spray and line four 8-inch cake pans with parchment paper and preheat oven to 325 degrees.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, graham cracker crumbs, baking powder and salt and set aside.
In a mixing bowl with a paddle attachment, cream together the butter, shortening, granulated sugar and brown sugar.
Slowly add in the egg yolks, scraping the bowl well in between additions. Alternate mixing in the dry ingredients with the milk and vanilla in two parts.
In a clean mixing bowl with a whip attachment, whip the egg whites to a stiff peak. Fold the egg whites into the batter until uniform.
Divide the batter evenly between the four cake pans, about 1 cup in each pan. The layers will be thin.
Bake for 10 to 12 minutes until the cake is set and golden brown.
For the Marshmallow Meringue:
In a heavy bottom pot, combine the water, 2 cups of sugar and corn syrup. Over high heat, cook the sugar mixture to 246 degrees.
While sugar is cooking, bloom the gelatin sheets in ice water.
Whip the egg whites on medium speed. Once the egg whites are at a medium peak, add in the second amount of sugar along with the cream of tartar. Continue to whip on low to medium speed until the sugar is ready.
Once the sugar reaches 246 degrees, remove from heat and add in the bloomed gelatin (squeeze out any excess water before adding).
Once with gelatin has melted, slowly pour the hot sugar into the whipped egg whites while whipping on medium speed.
Be sure to pour down the inside of the bowl to avoid the whisk throwing the sugar around the bowl. Once all of the sugar has been added, let the meringue continue to whip until the bowl is no longer warm to the touch.
For the Chocolate Ganache:
Place the dark chocolate into a bowl and set aside.
In a pot, bring the heavy cream and corn syrup to a scald.
Pour the hot cream mixture over the chocolate and whisk until smooth.
To assemble the cake:
Once the cake, meringue and ganache are all cooled to room temperature, you can begin to assemble.
The layers of cake are followed by meringue and then a thin layer of ganache. Continue to build the cake, repeating that pattern until the top layer of cake is on.
Then cover the whole cake with the marshmallow meringue. Pour the ganache over the cake (you may need to slightly warm the ganache for this step if is too cold or thick to pour). Enjoy!