1. Bake: The puff dough must be baked very complete. Start by docking it all over from edge to edge. This is important to allow the steam to escape during the baking process. Too many holes will make the sheet lay really flat and too few holes will cause it to be very puffy. Depending on what you use to prick the holes this may take some experimentation. Baking on a parchment paper will be advised. Start out with a hot oven (425F) Once it has puffed up the heat can be reduced. If it puffs too much you can pierce the area with a narrow tipped knife. Reducing the heat to 375F continue baking until it is golden brown all over. A nutty aroma should develop when it is done. If it is not baked completely the sheet will collapse and the flaky layers will form a tough leathery layer. Cool completely before using.
2. Prepare: Whip the cold pastry cream with vanilla. Slice the chocolate cake into layers that will cover the area of one of the puff sheets.
3. Assemble: Pick your best surface for the top. The flat (baked) bottom will be the top smooth surface. The other flat baked bottom should be placed on a flat board or pan. Spread half the vanilla pastry cream evenly from edge to edge. Overlay the layers of chocolate cake. Moisten with the Rhum Syrup and spread the remaining half of pastry cream onto the cake. Press on the second puff sheet flat sided up. Using a flat pan press it down firmly.
4. Trim: Using a sharp serrated knife trim off the excess un-even edges, on all four sides.
5. Apply: Using a sifter, apply an even coating of powdered sugar to the top layer of the cake, until it is covered perfectly white.
6. Chill: Chill until it is to be served
7. Slice: Wash your knife and dry it completely before each cut, as slicing into servings.
Prepared by: Julieta for the January 2005 meeting (Julieta purchased this cake from a local bakery.)