Here’s a lovely cake that showcases moist layers of chocolate cake and chocolate ganache topping, with a light creamy chestnut mousse filling.

Chocolate Chestnut Cake

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 1 hour

Total Time: 1 hour, 15 minutes

Yield: One 9-inch cake

Chocolate Chestnut Cake


    For cake:
  • 1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 cups boiling water
  • 2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 4 eggs, at room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • For the chestnut mousse filling:
  • 1 1/4 cups heavy cream
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 8 ounces vacuum-packed or jarred chestnuts
  • For the chocolate ganache topping:
  • 5 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped
  • 3/4 cup heavy cream


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Butter 2 9-inch cake pans and line bottom with parchment paper.
  2. Put cocoa powder in heatproof bowl and pour boiling water over. Stir until smooth and let cool.
  3. Whisk flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt together in bowl.
  4. In heavy-duty mixer, beat butter and sugar together until very light and fluffy, about 3 minutes on medium-high speed. Beat in eggs, one at a time. Stir in vanilla. Add flour mixture in 3 separate additions, alternating with cocoa.
  5. Divide batter evenly between cake pans. Bake 25 – 30 minutes or until tops of cakes spring back when touched in center. Cool in pan 20 minutes, then gently turn out and cool completely on rack. Cakes can be made up to 2 days ahead. Wrap in plastic and store at room temperature.
  6. To make chestnut mousse filling, put sugar and cream in small saucepan and whisk until sugar is dissolved. Add chestnuts and bring to simmer (watch carefully as the cream can boil over). Lower heat to maintain simmer and cook 20 minutes. Puree chestnuts and cream in food processor or blender until very smooth. Cool. (The filling can be prepared up to 2 days ahead – cover and refrigerate, then bring to room temperature before assembling cake)
  7. To make ganache topping, put chocolate in heatproof bowl. Bring cream to boil. Pour over chocolate. Let stand for 1 minute. Stir until chocolate melts and the ganache is completely smooth. Allow to cool to room temperature.
  8. To assemble cake, spread chestnut mousse over one cake and place other cake on top. Spread top with ganache.

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