* Gold dust is available at cake decorating shops.
Set a rack in the middle of the oven and preheat to 350 degrees F. Lightly grease
a 9-inch round cake pan. Line it with a round of parchment paper or buttered wax
Place bittersweet chocolate in a medium bowl. Combine coffee and 1/2 cup of the
sugar in a small saucepan. Heat over medium heat, stirring, until the sugar is completely
dissolved. Pour hot sugar syrup over the chocolate, and stir until melted and smooth.
Put butter and 1/4 cup of the sugar in a the bowl of an electric mixer and beat
at high speed for 2 minutes, or until well combined and smooth. Add eggs one at
a time, beating until each is incorporated. Continue beating, scraping down the
sides of the bowl if necessary, until light and fluffy, about 5 more minutes. With
the mixer on its lowest setting, or using a rubber spatula, gradually beat or fold
in chocolate syrup. Beat or fold in nuts and bread crumbs.
In a dry bowl, combine egg whites and salt and whisk until soft peaks form. Sprinkle
on the remaining 1 teaspoon sugar and whisk until the peaks stiffen to the consistency
of shaving cream. Fold one third of the egg whites into the chocolate mixture, then
gently, but thoroughly, fold in the remaining whites. Spread the batter in the prepared
Bake for 50 minutes, or until the top is springy to the touch and a cake tester
comes out clean. Cool in the pan on a wire rack.
Turn the cake out onto a wire rack. Pour the Ganache over it and, using as few
strokes as possible, frost the cake. Scatter the Ibarra chocolate over the top of
the cake, then use a fine strainer to sprinkle the gold dust over it.
Ganache: Put chocolate in a small bowl. In a small saucepan, bring cream to a
scald over medium heat. Pour the hot cream over the chocolate. Working from the
center out, gently stir to melt and blend until smooth. Let the Ganache sit until
slightly thickened, about 10 minutes. It should be spreadable, but still pourable.
If the Ganache doesn't have a smooth patina, blend in a few drops of cold heavy
cream. A matte finish will dry to a mirror shine.