A richly textured dessert is a fertile nesting ground for a miniature roost spun from kataifi, or shredded phyllo dough, and filled with candy-coated chocolate eggs. Pendulous snowdrops spring from a powdery frost of confectioners' sugar.

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Ingredients

For the Nest
For the Cake
For the Frosting
For the Garnish

Directions

Instructions Checklist
  • Make the nest: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly brush a 1/3-cup-capacity round silicone mold with butter. In a bowl, gently toss butter and kataifi to combine.

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  • Lift kataifi out of bowl, gently stretching strands to form a loose rope. Lay 1 end in the cupped fingers of 1 hand. Gently spiral rope to shape into a nest.

  • Fit nest into mold, pulling up edges to rest over rim. Place on a baking sheet. Bake until golden brown, 25 to 30 minutes. Let cool completely in mold on a wire rack. Unmold. Dust with cocoa.

  • Make the cake: Butter two 10-by-2-inch round cake pans. Line with parchment cut to fit, and butter parchment. Dust with cocoa, and tap out excess. Sift flour, sugar, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder, and salt into the bowl of a mixer. Add remaining ingredients. Mix on low speed until smooth, about 3 minutes. Divide batter among prepared pans.

  • Bake, rotating pans halfway through, until a toothpick inserted into centers of cakes comes out clean, about 35 minutes. Let cool in pans on wire racks for 45 minutes. Run a knife around edges of cakes to loosen, and turn onto racks. Remove parchment, turn cakes right side up, and let cool completely.

  • Make the frosting: Sift confectioners' sugar, cocoa, and salt into a bowl. In the bowl of a mixer, beat cream cheese and butter on medium-high speed until fluffy, about 4 minutes. Reduce speed to low. Gradually add sugar mixture, beating until combined. Beat in melted chocolate and sour cream until combined.

  • Make the garnish: Using a vegetable peeler, scrape chocolate at a 45-degree angle. Using a spatula, transfer curls to a parchment-lined baking sheet. Cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes (or up to 4 days).

  • To assemble: Using a serrated knife, trim tops of cakes to create level surfaces. Reserve trimmings. Place 1 cake, cut side up, on a cake stand. Spread 2 cups frosting over top. Top with remaining cake, cut side up. Spread remaining frosting over top and sides. Finely grind cake trimmings in a food processor. Sprinkle crumbs over top of cake.

  • Using tweezers, gently press chocolate curls to sides of cake. Dust top with confectioners' sugar if desired. Decorate with nest, chocolate eggs, and flowers.

Cook's Notes

For the directions for the crepe-paper flowers, see the Crepe-Paper Crocuses and Snowdrops How-To.

Reviews (12)

46 Ratings
  • 5 star values: 12
  • 4 star values: 13
  • 3 star values: 13
  • 2 star values: 5
  • 1 star values: 3
Rating: Unrated
06/15/2013
This is an amazing cake my mouth was watering throughout the process of consumption. Talking of mouth watering recipes and a quick treat for the kids. This is a quick and easy recipe using skorbits and crackers http://unleashvideo.com/1849/how-to-make-the-worlds-best-skor-squares.html
Rating: Unrated
04/01/2012
Can anything non alcoholic be substituted for the rum,as I don't have any?,
Rating: 5 stars
04/23/2011
I just made the frosting portion of the recipe, and it is AMAZING! My new favorite chocolate recipe. I made half a batch and it was plenty for a 9-inch double layer cake. I also ended up adding some vanilla and a bit more sour cream to get the consistency and flavor right. I highly recommend this frosting!
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Rating: Unrated
03/25/2010
Rating: Unrated
03/25/2010
I am unable to get the crepe paper flower link either, can someone help?!?
Rating: Unrated
03/25/2010
I am unable to get the crepe paper flower link either, can someone help?!?
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Rating: Unrated
03/05/2010
Hello :) I still can't access the link to the Flowers !!! HELP PLEASE !!!
Rating: Unrated
03/03/2010
I cannot access the link to the flowers. Any suggestions?
Rating: Unrated
02/05/2010
Hi joyfarm, we've added a link to a larger image as well!
Rating: Unrated
04/04/2008
Thanks! I think they added it after my comment. Good job!
Rating: Unrated
03/19/2008
joyfarm, the photo is on the "print friendly" page with the link for the "how To" make the crepe paper flowers.
Rating: Unrated
03/17/2008
Hi. Please add a larger photo, as well as a link to how to make the crepe paper flowers. Thank you!