Preparation / Directions:
White Chocolate Hazelnut Filling:
1/4 cup hazelnut liquer, such as Frangelico
1 envelope gelatin powder
12 ounces white chocolate -- coarsely chopped
1 cup milk
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups heavy cream
2 pints fresh strawberries -- stemmed
White Chocolate Glaze:
4 ounces white chocolate -- coarsely chopped
1/4 cup heavy cream
2 tablespoons heavy cream
1 tablespoon light corn syrup
MAKE THE HAZELNUT CRUST:
1. Lightly butter the bottom of a 9-inch springform pan. Place the rice cereal and the toasted hazelnuts in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the metal chopping blade. Process the mixture for 25 to 30 seconds, until finely ground. Transfer the cereal/nut mixture to a medium bowl.
2. Melt the white chocolate in a double boiler over low heat. Using a rubber spatula, scrape the melted chocolate into the cereal mixture in the bowl. Stir the mixture until combined; scrape it into the prepared pan. Press the cereal mixture evenly o
ver the bottom of the pan. Place the pan in the refrigerator.
MAKE THE WHITE CHOCOLATE HAZELNUT FILLING:
2. Place the white chocolate in a large bowl. In a small saucepan over medium heat, bring the milk to a gentle boil. Pour the hot milk over the chocoalte and let the mixture stand for 30 seconds to melt the chocolate. Add the warm gelatin mixture and vanilla; whisk until smooth. Place the bowl over a larger bowl of ice water and stir for 5 to 10 minutes, or until the mixture is cool.
3. In a chilled medium bowl, using a handheld electric mixer, beat the cream at medium speed until it begins to form soft mounds. Do not overbeat or the mousse will be grainy. Fold one-third of the whipped cream into the white chocolate mixture. Fold in the remaining whipped cream. Set the mousse aside at room temperature.
ASSEMBLE THE CAKE:
1. Remove the prepared springofrm pan from the refrigerator. Slice a strawberry in half lengthwise. Arrange the two halves next to each other, stem-side-down with the cut side agains the side of the pan. Continue to cut strawberries and fill in the bo
rder of the pan, cutting only as many strawberries as needed. Fill in the center of the pan with shole strawberries, placing them stem-side-down and using as many as needed. Reserve the remaining strawberries for garnish.
2. Carefully scrape the white chocolate mousse over the strawberries. Using a small metal spatula, smooth the op of the mousse so that it is even. Refrigerate the cake for four hours, until the mousse is firm. (Do not refrigerate the cake for longer t
han 6 hours, as the strawberries will release water and cause the cake to collapse when sliced.)
MAKE THE WHITE CHOCOLATE GLAZE:
1. Melt the white chocolate in a double boiler over low heat and set aside. In a small saucepan, bring the cream and corn syrup to a gentle boil. Stir the hot cream into the melted chocolate until smooth.
GLAZE AND GARNISH THE CAKE:
1. Remove the cake from the refirgerator. Pour the white chocolate glaze evenly over the top of the cake, covering it completely. Return the cake to the refrigerator for 30 minutes to set the glaze.
2. To unmold the cake, carefully run a small, hot knife around the edge of the pan. Undo the clasp on the springform pan and remove the side of the pan. Garnish the top of the cake with the remaining straberries sliced, and rosettes of whipped cream.