Culinary Producer Grant Melton transforms all there is to love about churros into a crisp, fluffy cake made with a cinnamon whipped cream and Mexican hot chocolate-inspired sauce. The cake should be served immediately after assembling, but you can make the churro layers, whipped cream, and chocolate sauce 1-2 days in advance.
For the cake, place the butter and water in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Cook until butter melts and water comes to a boil. Add flour and salt, turn off the heat, and mix with a wooden spoon vigorously until the mixture comes together and the doughs pulls away from the side of the pan. Quickly transfer into the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. With the machine on, add eggs one at a time, scraping down the sides of the bowl between each addition. Once eggs are incorporated, transfer the dough to a piping bag fitted with a star tip attachment. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Preheat oven to 400˚F. Combine the sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl. Line two cookie sheets with parchment paper; trace two 10-inch cake rounds on 1 sheet and trace one more cake round on the other sheet.
After the dough chills, pipe dough into big spirals inside the traced rounds on the parchment paper. Sprinkle each dough spiral with 2 tablespoons cinnamon sugar. Bake until churros are golden brown, puffed and a bit dry looking, 35-40 minutes.
For the whipped cream, using a standing mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, whip the cream until soft peaks form. Mix in crème fraiche, then slowly add in the sugar, cinnamon and salt.
For the chocolate ganache, in a small saucepan, heat the heavy cream over medium heat until hot but not boiling. Remove from heat and add chocolate chips, stirring until chocolate melts. Whisk in chili powder, cinnamon and salt until smooth.
To assemble the cake, place a cooled churro round on a cake stand. Top with 1/3 of the whipped cream, followed by a drizzle of chocolate ganache. Repeat twice so there are three layers of each. Serve immediately with remaining ganache on the side.