Jewel Chaudhary, mother of Arun Chaudhary, submitted this recipe for Raspberry Ganache Marjolaine for the White House Seder dinner. She originally found it in an issue of Bon Appetit in the early 1990s.
“It was introduced into the family because we are big chocolate lovers, and other than jell-rings or chocolate covered macaroons it’s not always so easy to get unleavened chocolate into your life on Passover. So the introduction on this dessert to our seder was a great way to end the 80’s,” Chaudhary told me in an email.
Raspberry Ganache Marjolaine
Reprinted with Permission from “Bon Appetit Desserts: The Cookbook for All Things Sweet and Wonderful” (November 2010, Andrews McMeel Publishing)
Marjolaine is a classic French gâteau with a rectangular shape and multiple layers of nutty meringue and buttercream. This rendition features layers of raspberry ganache and hazelnut meringue. The absence of flour and the use of ground nuts, egg whites, and chocolate makes this a sophisticated gluten-free cake and Passover-friendly dessert (as long as you use “kosher for Passover” vanilla and almond extracts). Because it does use dairy ingredients, serve the marjolaine at a meatless Passover meal.
2 ¼ cups heavy whipping cream
21 ounces bittersweet or semisweet chocolate (do not exceed 61% cacao), chopped
½ cup raspberry preserves
2 tablespoons (¼ stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
2 tablespoons kosher Concord grape wine
2 cups hazelnuts, toasted, husked, divided
½ cup plus 6 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoon potato starch
4 large egg whites, room temperature
½ teaspoon fresh lemon juice
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
¼ teaspoon almond extract
¼ teaspoon salt
1 ½-pint container raspberries
GANACHE: Bring cream to boil in heavy medium saucepan. Remove from heat. Add chocolate and stir until melted and smooth. Stir in preserves, butter, and wine. Cover and chill overnight. DO AHEAD: Can be made 2 days ahead. Keep chilled.
MERINGUE: Preheat oven to 275°F. Trace five 10x4-inch rectangles on 2 sheets of parchment paper. Invert parchment onto 2 baking sheets. Coarsely grind 1 cup hazelnuts in processor. Combine with ½ cup sugar and potato starch in medium bowl.
Using electric mixer fitted with clean dry beaters, beat egg whites in large bowl until foamy. Add lemon juice, both extracts, and salt; continue beating until soft peaks form. Gradually add remaining 6 tablespoons sugar and beat until egg whites are stiff and glossy. Gently fold in hazelnut-sugar mixture.
Place 1 cup meringue on parchment in center of 1 rectangle. Spread with small spatula to fill in rectangle. Repeat with remaining meringue and parchment. Bake until meringues are golden brown and just dry to touch, about 25 minutes. Cool on baking sheets. Carefully peel off paper (meringues will deflate slightly).
Place 1 meringue rectangle on 10x4-inch cardboard rectangle. Spread ½ cup ganache over meringue. Repeat layering with 3 more meringue rectangles and 11⁄2 cups ganache. Top with remaining meringue rectangle. Spread top and sides of marjolaine with ¾ cup ganache. Chill marjolaine until firm, about 1 hour.
Rewarm remaining ganache in heavy medium saucepan over very low heat just until melted, stirring constantly. Cool to room temperature, about 20 minutes. Place marjolaine on wire rack set over baking sheet. Spread some ganache over sides of marjolaine. Pour remaining ganache over top; smooth with spatula if necessary. Let stand at room temperature until glaze is set, about 30 minutes. Chop remaining 1 cup hazelnuts. Gently press hazelnuts onto sides of marjolaine. Decorate top with raspberries. Chill marjolaine 1 hour.
DO AHEAD: Can be made 3 hours ahead. Keep chilled.