I decided I would make and share this cake for a momentous occasion - the season 3 premiere of Mad Men! Some friends took care of the dinner, I handled dessert. As it was hot that weekend, and my apartment is sans conditioned air, I talked my landlord into letting me use his fancy-pants convection/conventional oven. This was nice, as I was able to avoid the usual fear that coincides with using my flame-throwing gas oven. The batter went together nicely and baked up well. I waited another day or so before making the filling and frosting, and the cake layers held up great. I, too, had some mess in the frosting of it, but am a fan of a hand-made gateau cake anyway, so I decided to just go with it!
As usual, I had a few substitutions due to preference/ingredients on hand:
_Cognac instead of rum mixed with the raspberry jam (it's my baking/cooking liquor of choice)
_Jam had seeds in it because I couldn't find any without. No one seemed to mind.
_I mixed bittersweet and semi-sweet chocolate in all parts of the cake.
_There was no milk chocolate & dark chocolate frostings... Just the dark chocolate made into a ganache and loaded onto the cake.
It was so rich. I found that fresh whipped cream helped to cut the richness of the chocolate. The raspberries also helped add a nice fresh burst to the bites. Such a sinful treat!