Yields 8−12 martini glasses or enough “frosting” for previous cake
from Executive Pastry Chef Sarah Koob of Canoe in Atlanta, GA
3 cups heavy cream, separated
1 bay leaf
½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
¼ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
1 envelope Knox gelatin
½ cup cold water
2 cups high-quality milk chocolate, chopped
½ cup sugar
Begin by whipping 2 cups heavy cream to medium peaks. Set aside in refrigerator until needed.
Heat remaining cup heavy cream with bay leaf, cayenne, salt, and vanilla extract to a scald, then remove from heat.
Dissolve the envelope of gelatin in ½ cup cold water before adding it to the scalded cream.
In a medium-large bowl, place the chopped chocolate and strain the spiced cream/gelatin mixture over the chocolate to make a ganache. Note: If all of the chocolate isn’t fully melted after this process, melt remaining chunks of chocolate in a double boiler. Ganache should be smooth and velvety.
Set mixture aside, careful not to let the ganache cool down too much and “seize up.” If it does, however, don’t worry; just rewarm the mixture over the double boiler.
Combine eggs and sugar in a mixing bowl that can be heated over a double boiler and whisk the mixture continuously over medium heat to cook the eggs approximately 3 minutes. Then whip via a handheld or stand mixer to incorporate volume and cool the mixture.
Add the ganache in 1/3 increments to the whipped egg mixture, folding it in.
Finish by adding the whipped cream in ⅓ increments, then portion into martini glasses and chill for 1−2 hours before serving.