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Chocolate Bavarian Cream Domes

Bavarian cream sounds like an intimidating feat but is actually a lot easier than it looks! Although it is comprised of very basic ingredients, like many classic French recipes, technique is everything. Bavarian cream is made by first making a crème anglaise, then adding gelatin sheets and cooling over a cold water and ice bath.

Spread this recipe out over two separate days: the chocolate pastry tart and flourless chocolate almond cake on the first day, and the vanilla Frangelico Bavarian Cream, chocolate Bavarian cream and chocolate espresso glaze on the second day.

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Chocolate Pastry Tart

This chocolate pastry tart is quick and easy to prepare and can be made with a food processor. Lightly flour your rolling pin and work surface and avoid adding too much extra flour, or the dough will be too fragile and will fall apart when forming your tart shells.


Flourless Chocolate Almond Cake

I use unsweetened chocolate in this cake for deep chocolate flavor so there is full control of the sweetness level and flavor profile. This flourless chocolate cake is so rich and gooey with a hint of vanilla and almond. What rounds out the flavor of this cake is a touch of salt you taste at the end of every bite.


Vanilla Frangelico Bavarian Cream (Crème Bavaroise)

Once you see how delicious this crème anglaise is (and how easy it is to make), you will make it all the time and put it on everything! It tastes just like premium vanilla bean ice cream but is even creamier and has much more flavor.

If the Bavarian cream looks thin at first and you are afraid it won’t set, just be patient! It takes the full 30 minutes to thicken and even longer to fully set. If you chilled the gelatin correctly, you have nothing to worry about!


Chocolate Bavarian Cream (Crème Bavaroise)

For this Bavarian cream, crème anglaise is poured over finely chopped chocolate, gelatin sheets are added, and whipped cream is folded in. It is rich and creamy and perfectly balances the sweetness of the vanilla Frangelico cream and the gooey chocolate cake.


Chocolate Espresso Glaze

This mirror glaze is glossy and absolutely picture perfect! It is passed through a fine-mesh strainer (twice!) so it has optimal smoothness. This glaze will start to set the moment it glides over the frozen Bavarian cream!


Equipment needed

  • Kitchen scale – I use a kitchen scale for everything I bake! While it is not always necessary, I highly recommend having one for this recipe to be as precise as possible.
  • Half sheet pan for the cake (your standard cookie sheet)
  • Food processor for the pastry tart (you can also mix by hand)
  • Rolling pin
  • Pie weights (I use 2 sets for this recipe)
  • Bain-Marie – or a heat-proof bowl set over a saucepan of simmering water.
  • (12) 7 cm perforated tart rings – If you order through this link, you will need 2 sets!
  • (12) 2 1/2 inch diameter silicone molds
  • 1 1/2-inch diameter silicone molds
  • 2-inch biscuit cutter
  • Mini cake boards – These are not an absolute “must”, but I strongly recommend them for storing the finished domes, since they will be difficult to store and handle without blemishing the perfect mirror glaze.

Prepare in advance

  • Read the entire recipe (twice) – It will keep you prepared and organized when tackling a multi-part recipe!
  • Finely chop the chocolate (for the flourless chocolate cake, the chocolate Bavarian cream, and the chocolate espresso glaze, labelling each accordingly).
  • Preparation for the flourless chocolate almond cake:
    • Set out 6 large eggs (300 g) to bring to room temperature.
    • Grease a half sheet pan with butter, then line with parchment paper and butter the paper.
  • Preparation for the chocolate pastry tart:
    • Prepare a clean surface to roll out the dough. Measure about 2 tbsp of flour and set aside for dusting.
    • Cut out 12 circles of tin foil 4-inches in diameter to use for blind baking. Set out pie weights or baking beans.
  • For the vanilla Frangelico Bavarian cream:
    • Set out 2 large egg yolks (30 g) to bring to room temperature.
    • Prepare 2 cold water and ice baths: One in a small, shallow bowl for the gelatin, and one medium bowl to cool the crème anglaise. Store in the freezer or refrigerator until use.
  • For the chocolate Bavarian cream:
    • Set out to bring to room temperature: 3-4 large egg yolks (50 g)
    • Prepare 2 cold water and ice baths: One in a small, shallow bowl for the gelatin, and one large bowl to cool the crème anglaise. Store in the freezer or refrigerator until use.
  • For the chocolate espresso glaze:
    • Prepare a cold water and ice bath for the gelatin sheets.

Print
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Chocolate Bavarian Cream Domes


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  • Author: Amy @ The Pastry Blog
  • Yield: 12 domes 1x

Ingredients

Units Scale

For the flourless chocolate almond cake:

  • 6 large eggs (300 g), at room temperature
  • 323 g dark brown sugar
  • 150 g granulated sugar
  • 1 1/4 tsp fine sea salt
  • 226 g unsweetened chocolate, finely chopped
  • 170 g unsalted butter
  • 30 ml freshly brewed espresso
  • 2 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1 1/4 tsp pure almond extract
  • 30 g dark dutched processed cocoa powder for the cake + 20 g for assembly

For the chocolate pastry tart:

  • 165 g unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 30 g dark dutched processed cocoa powder
  • 50 g confectioner’s sugar
  • 150 g unsalted butter, chilled
  • 30 g egg yolks (from 2 eggs)
  • 50 ml heavy cream

For the vanilla Frangelico Bavarian cream:

  • 42 g Frangelico liquor (8 tsp)
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 4 tsp granulated sugar for the Frangelico syrup
  • 1 sheet of gelatin
  • 100 ml whole milk
  • 60 ml heavy whipping cream
  • 30 g egg yolks (from 2 eggs), at room temperature
  • 30 g granulated sugar for the bavarois

For the chocolate Bavarian cream:

  • 203 g dark chocolate (60-70% recommended), finely chopped
  • 4 sheets of gelatin
  • 324 g whole milk
  • 108 g heavy whipping cream for the milk mixture + 128 g to whip
  • 90 g granulated sugar
  • 50 g egg yolks (from 3-4 eggs), at room temperature

For the chocolate espresso glaze:

  • 6 sheets of gelatin
  • 90 ml water
  • 300 g granulated sugar
  • 90 ml freshly brewed espresso
  • 1 tbsp pure vanilla extract
  • 225 g dark chocolate (60-70% recommended), finely chopped
  • 30 g dark dutched processed cocoa powder, sifted
  • 90 ml heavy cream

Instructions

For the flourless chocolate almond cake:

  1. Grease a half sheet pan with butter and line with parchment paper, buttering the parchment paper as well.
  2. Preheat the oven to 350°F.
  3. In a large bowl, whisk the eggs, both sugars, and salt together until fully incorporated.
  4. Place the chopped chocolate and butter into a bain-marie over simmering water, stirring occasionally, until just melted and smooth. Remove from the heat.
  5. Into the chocolate mixture, add the espresso, vanilla and almond extract.
  6. Slowly pour the chocolate mixture into the yolk mixture, whisking continuously while pouring to temper the eggs.
  7. Whisk in the cocoa powder and mix until fully incorporated.
  8. Pour into the prepared sheet pan and bake for 18-19 minutes, or until the corner edges begin to darken and pull away from the pan. Be careful not to overbake! Since this cake is naturally very gooey, a cake tester will not come out completely dry once it is fully baked.
  9. Place on a wire rack and let cool completely.

For the chocolate pastry tart:

  1. Prepare a clean work surface. Measure out 2 tablespoons of flour, using some to dust the surface and pushing the rest to the side for future use.
  2. Cut out 12 circles of tin foil 4-inches in diameter to use for blind baking. Set out pie weights or baking beans.
  3. In a food processor, pulse the flour, cocoa powder and confectioner’s sugar until combined.
  4. Cut the chilled butter into 1-inch pieces add to the flour mixture. Pulse until the butter is fully incorporated and no large chunks remain.
  5. Add the heavy cream and egg yolks and pulse just until the mixture forms into a soft dough. Do not overmix! The dough will be very sticky at this stage.
  6. Remove the dough from the food processor, cover in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 15 minutes.
  7. Cut off 1/4 of the dough to roll out, setting the other 75% aside to prevent re-rolling and overworking all of the dough.
  8. Lightly flour the rolling pin and the top of the dough and roll the dough into an approximate rectangle with 3mm thickness. As you are rolling, be conscious of keeping the surface and rolling pin lightly floured but use it as sparingly as you can.
  9. Using the tart rings, cut out 12 circles and set aside. If you run out of space, you will need to re-roll the dough. Try to minimize this as over-handling the dough will make it tough.
  10. Once the circles have been cut out, re-roll the remaining dough into a long, rectangular shape 9-10 inches long. Cut 12 long strips about 1 inch wide and 9-10 inches long.
  11. Gently press the strips of dough into the inner rim of the tart rings and carefully smear the edges where the base and outer rim meet with your finger.
  12. Holding a sharp knife at a 160° angle with the tip facing up, trim the excess pastry dough from the upper rim of the tart rings.
  13. Prick the base of the dough with a fork for ventilation, then refrigerate the tart rings for 30 minutes. In the meantime, preheat the oven to 325°F.
  14. Once chilled, carefully line each tart ring with the prepared circles of tin foil and fill each with pie weights.
  15. Blind bake the pastry crust at 325° F for 15 minutes.
  16. Remove from the oven and carefully remove the foil and pie weights. Return the pastry to the oven for an additional 5 minutes.
  17. Let cool completely without handling before lifting off the sheet or removing the tart rings, since the pastry tart will be very fragile while still hot.

For the vanilla Frangelico Bavarian cream:

  1. Prepare 2 cold water and ice baths: one in a small, shallow bowl for the gelatin, and one large bowl to cool the crème anglaise. Store the large water and ice bath the refrigerator until use. Ensure the water is very cold for the best results!
  2. In a small saucepan, combine the Frangelico liquor, vanilla extract, and 4 tsp granulated sugar. Heat on medium and whisk just until the sugar has completely dissolved. Transfer to a medium bowl and set aside.
  3. Place the gelatin into the smaller water and ice bath for 10 minutes.
  4. In a large bowl, whisk the egg yolks and sugar and whisk until the mixture has thickened and is pale yellow in color.
  5. In a medium saucepan, bring the milk and heavy cream to a boil, removing it from the heat the moment it reaches a boil. Watch this closely as the milk will quickly foam as it begins to boil. Turn off the heat.
  6. Slowly pour a third of the hot milk mixture into the yolk mixture, whisking continuously while pouring to temper the eggs.
  7. Return the remaining hot milk to the stovetop (with the heat turned off) and let the whisk rest in the pan. With one hand holding the bowl of the egg mixture and tipping it slightly over the pan of hot milk, use a rubber spatula to push the mixture to the corner of the bowl. Gradually tip the egg mixture into the saucepan, whisking continuously as it is added. Once the majority of the mixture has been added, rest the whisk into the saucepan and scrape any remaining mixture into the pan with the rubber spatula.
  8. Once all of the yolk mixture has all been added, turn the heat to medium, whisking continuously. As soon as the mixture begins to lightly simmer, or “burp”, remove it from the heat.
  9. Pour the hot mixture (now crème anglaise) into the bowl with the Frangelico syrup and whisk until combined.
  10. Remove the gelatin sheet from the water and ice bath, squeezing it gently to remove the excess water, and place it into the bowl of hot crème anglaise. Whisk until incorporated.
  11. Fit the bowl into the large water and ice bath. Leave to cool for about 30 minutes, whisking occasionally. By the end of the 30 minutes, the cream should become thicker and should have a very slight jiggle when shaken. If you dip a spoon into the cream and allow it drip back down into the bowl, some streaks should be visible just before blending back into the mixture.
  12. Place the small silicone domes onto a sheet pan and carefully spoon the Bavarian cream into the domes. Level with a large offset spatula or the flat side of a knife. Place the sheet pan in the freezer and chill for at least 1 hour or until completely set. ***Ensure this Bavarian cream is completely set before making the chocolate Bavarian cream.

For the chocolate Bavarian cream:

  1. Follow the steps 1- 11 for the Bavarian cream above but using the quantities for the chocolate Bavarian Cream. You will omit step 2 and instead will pour the hot crème anglaise into a large bowl over the chopped chocolate. The chocolate Bavarian cream will be thicker than the vanilla Frangelico Bavarian cream. If you start to feel resistance when trying to whisk it on the ice bath, it is set!
  2. Once the cream has set in the ice bath, whip 128 ml heavy cream until stiff peaks form. Gently whisk the whipped cream into the chocolate Bavarian cream.
  3. Place the large silicone domes onto a sheet pan and carefully spoon the Bavarian cream into the domes, filling them three quarters of the way.
  4. Remove the small silicone domes containing the vanilla Frangelico Bavarian cream from the freezer and carefully remove each from the mold, placing them into the center of each chocolate dome. Fill the remainder of the dome with chocolate Bavarian cream and level with a large offset spatula or knife.
  5. Place the sheet pan in the freezer for at least 1 hour or until set.

Assembly:

  1. Dip a 2-inch biscuit cutter into cocoa powder, then cut the flourless chocolate cake into 12 round circles using only the first half of the sheet pan, dipping in cocoa powder in between each cut. Place the cake circles into the pastry tarts.
  2. Using the perforated tart ring, repeat the step above for the second half of the sheet pan. Place the cake circles on top of the top rim of the pastry tarts.
  3. Remove the frozen domes from the freezer and place them on top of the top layer of cake.
  4. Place the assembled domes on a wire rack resting on a sheet pan and store in the freezer until ready to glaze.

For the chocolate espresso glaze:

  1. Prepare a cold water and ice bath in a shallow bowl.
  2. Place the gelatin into the water and ice bath and let sit for 10 minutes.
  3. Combine the water, sugar, vanilla and espresso in medium saucepan and cook while whisking on medium-high heat until the sugar has fully dissolved, and the water has come to a boil. Continue to whisk and let the syrup boil for 30 seconds to 1 minute.
  4. Remove from the heat, add the chopped chocolate and whisk until fully incorporated.
  5. Return the stovetop and decrease the temperature to low. Add the heavy cream and whisk until combined. 
  6. Add the sifted cocoa powder and whisk until it has completely dissolved, and the mixture is smooth and glossy.
  7. Remove from the heat and pass through a fine mesh strainer into a large liquid measuring cup. 
  8. Remove the gelatin sheet from the water and ice bath, squeezing gently to remove the excess water, and place into the measuring cup of chocolate glaze. Whisk until fully incorporated.
  9. Pass the glaze through the fine mesh strainer for a second time, back into the original saucepan.
  10. Using a rubber spatula, transfer the glaze back into the measuring cup. Let the glaze cool for 5 minutes before glazing.
  11. Remove the sheet pan with the assembled domes from the freezer. While the domes are still frozen and the glaze is still hot, carefully pour the glaze over each dome in a swirling motion to ensure all parts of the dome get glazed. If any bare spots remain, use a rubber spatula to cover them with glaze (this glaze is very forgiving before it sets). If you run out of glaze before glazing all of the domes – Carefully remove the wire rack from the cookie sheet and tip the glaze in the sheet pan back into the measuring cup. This glaze can easily be recycled before it fully sets!
  12. Return the sheet pan to the freezer for 30-45 minutes or until set.
  13. Once set, carefully transfer the domes onto the mini cake boards. You can do this by carefully pushing the base of each dome onto a spatula with the prongs of a fork. Be careful not to tip the domes at too much of an angle when placing them onto the cake boards or they might tip over!
  14. Move into an airtight container. Thaw and store in the refrigerator for 4-6 hours before serving. Once thawed, these domes are best served within 48 hours. Store any domes you don’t intend to serve right away in the freezer and thaw as needed!

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