I LOVE Opera cakes. Opera cake is composed of thin layers of delicious sponge alternating with layers of creamy coffee flavored buttercream and luscious ganache. The cake is glazed and typically iced with the word “opera” but this version is constructed into a cute little triangle that are reminiscent of a beautiful timbered cottage
I made my first Opera Cake the other day and really LOVED the outcome so I thought I would share the process with my fellow cake lovers in case you want to make your own fancy opera cake just in time to impress the family for the upcoming holidays!
Things you will need:
1 sheet pan
1 silicone silpat
Coffee flavored swiss buttercream
Ganache (half room temp half warm for glazing)
Melted white chocolate mixed with a little neutral oil for piping
Step 1: Make the sponge!
7 oz almond meal
6 oz powdered sugar
2 oz cake flour
5 each eggs
6 egg whites
1 oz sugar
2.5 oz melted butter
Opera sponge is very simple but the steps involved are important to get a great sponge to work with.
Fold meringue into egg mixture until smooth but don’t over mix
Lastly fold in melted butter slowly
Spread batter evenly over silpat mat with a spatula. batter will be very thin! Tap pan so batter is very level and then bake at 425 for about 8 minutes. Don’t over bake the sponge or you’ll end up with crispy crackers instead of sponge
The finished sponge should be a nice golden color and still flexible
Step 2: Construction!
Once sponge is cooled. Remove from silpat and cut into measured rectangles.
1 strip at 3″ wide (the length can be as long as you wish but make sure all the lengths are the same)
4 strip at 2.5″ wide
1 piece of cut cardboard for your base
Layer the sponge with alternating layers of buttercream and ganache (.25″ thick) starting with buttercream and ending with ganache. Don’t worry too much about the edges but do try and get the layers an even thickness.
Chill the layers in the refrigerator until quite firm. Once firm, place the layers right side up on the edge of your table or cutting board. With a sharp serrated knife, cut the cake into two triangles. Use the edge of the table to guide the bottom of your knife and line the top of your knife up with the top edge of the cake as illustrated in the photo. Cut carefully so you get a nice straight line. Also, do NOT cut off your fingers
Place cake over a parchment lined pan and a glazing rack. Start at one end and in one smooth motion, pour warm ganache over cake until evenly coated.
Place a little melted white chocolate mixed with some neutral oil into a piping bag. Pipe thin stripes over the top of the ganache. Pipe evenly spaced going one direction, turn the cake around and then pipe again. This creates the diamond pattern on top of the cake.
Chill the cake once again and then slice into about 1/2″ servings. Serve and accept applause from impressed friends and family