THE MOST AMAZING RUSSIAN HONEY CAKE

THE MOST AMAZING RUSSIAN HONEY CAKE

While not difficult to make, this is a multi-step, highly involved cake that requires planning ahead. Please read through the instructions and the notes in the bottom of the recipe before starting. Note that the frosting calls for a can of Dulce De Leche, which is readily sold in some countries. If it's not available where you live, you can make your own with sweetened condensed milk. Just know that it takes 4 hours to cook, so plan ahead and make it as far as a month in advance. The finished cake, needs to chill overnight in the fridge before serving.

INSTRUCTIONS

TO PREPARE BAKING SHEETS:
  1. Adjust oven rack to middle position and preheat oven to 180C/375F.
  2. Line 2 or 3 (or more) baking sheets with see-through silicon mats. On a large piece of paper, trace a circle around a 9-inch pie or cake pan and place the paper underneath one of the silicon mats. If you don't have silicon mats, trace the 9-inch circles directly onto 11 baking-sheet-size pieces of parchment paper. Place a piece of parchment tracing-side-down on a baking sheet. Set aside.
TO MAKE THE BURNT HONEY:
  1. Place 3/4 cup of honey in a 2-quart saucepan, and set over high heat. Bring to a simmer, then reduce the heat to medium. Cook the honey, stirring occasionally with a heat-proof spatula, until it the color darkens and turns from pale yellow to dark amber; about 3 minutes. Turn off the heat and carefully add 1/4 cup water. Allow the honey to sputter until it stops bubbling, then whisk to combine. Transfer to a heatproof measuring cup with a spout, and set aside.
TO MAKE THE CAKE LAYERS:
  1. Fill a medium saucepan with 2 inches of water, and bring to a simmer. Combine 1/4 cup burned honey, 3/4 cup honey, sugar and butter in a large heat-proof bowl, and place over the pot of water, making sure the simmering water is not touching the bottom of the bowl.
  2. Crack eggs into a small bowl, and set aside. Stir together baking soda, salt and cinnamon in a separate small bowl.
  3. Gently stir the honey/butter mixture until the butter has melted, then whisk well to combine. Use your finger to test the temperature of the mixture. When it’s warm, add the eggs while whisking. When the mixture returns to the same temperature, add the cinnamon mixture, and continue whisking for another 30 seconds. The batter will begin to foam and emit a curious odor. Remove the bowl from the heat, and allow it to cool until it’s warm.

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