A mirror glaze is a showstopping way to decorate a stunning dessert. For this cheesecake, gelatine is added to sweet chocolate sauce which helps it set almost instantly to a glossy shine when poured onto the chilled cake. This technique may seem tricky but is actually easy to do, just requiring a bit of patience to achieve a perfect finish.
- Freeze the cheesecake for 2 hrs so it is cool enough to make the glaze set.
- Put the gelatine in a bowl and pour over 50ml cold water. Stir to combine, then set aside for 5 mins to thicken.
- Mix the condensed milk, sugar, glucose and 50ml water in a small pan, then set over a medium-low heat and bring to a simmer. Remove from the heat and stir through the gelatine mix.
- Put the dark chocolate in a large, heatproof bowl. Pour the condensed milk mix though a fine sieve over the top. Leave for 5 mins to melt. Fully submerge the blade of a stick blender in the mix and, holding the blender very still, blitz for 1 min until smooth and free from bubbles. Or, stir very gently to combine; avoiding beating any air into the mix.
- Leave to cool for 5-10 mins, stirring occasionally to stop a skin forming, until it reaches 33°C. If it goes below 30°C, heat in the microwave for 5-sec bursts to warm up. If making without a thermometer, watch the glaze closely and pour when it’s just starting to thicken, but still pours easily.
- Remove the cheesecake from the freezer and place on a wire rack set over a tray to catch excess glaze (see Tip below). Pour the glaze over the cheesecake in a circular motion from the centre until the top and sides are evenly coated.
- Allow to drip and set for 5 mins. If decorating, carefully drizzle the white chocolate over one side, then sprinkle with confetti or glitter to finish. Chill, covered, for up to 3 days.
Tip: Cover the drip tray with clingfilm, then squeeze excess glaze into a zip-up freezer bag. Squeeze the air from the bag, then put in another bag. Chill for up to 7 days. Microwave in a bowl in 10-sec bursts until smooth to reheat.
Temperature is very important. Too hot and the glaze will run off your cake, too cold and it won’t pour. Use a digital thermometer and ideally pour when it’s between 30-33°C.
You can use any flat-topped unbaked cheesecake (homemade or shop-bought) for this recipe, it just needs to be about 22cm wide. Cheesecakes make a good starting point and are easy to chill, but as you get more confident you can try using this technique to coat other bakes. A smooth layer of buttercream over a sponge cake will give a flat surface for the glaze to cover.
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