Fully bake a pecan pie (or buy one already bake) preferably in a disposable pie tin (so you can take it out easily later). Let it cool to room temperature. NOTE: if you bake your own pecan pie, I would recommend that you put parchment paper on the bottom of the pan. The first time I made this cake, my pie stuck and I had to cut in to 4 pieces. That did not change the taste of the cake, it was still delish!!
Preheat your oven to 350F degrees.
Grease your cake pan and line the bottom with a piece of parchment paper.
NOTE: The first time I baked this cake, I used an aluminum mold and it worked fine. I have since purchased a 10 X 3-inch springform pan and I must say I prefer it over the aluminum mold.
In a small bowl, whisk together the cocoa, coffee and water. Add in the vanilla. Set aside.
In a medium bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda, and salt; set aside.
In a standing mixer with a paddle attachment, cream together the butter and sugar until fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add the melted chocolate and mix until incorporated. Add the dry ingredients in thirds, alternating with the wet ingredients, beating well after each addition.
Spoon 1/3 of the batter evenly into the bottom of the cake pan. Take the pecan pie out of the tin (you may need to cut it out, so it might make sense to bake your pie in a disposable pie tin) and place it right side up on top of the batter. I thought that the pie might sink to the bottom either now or during baking, but like a ship, it sailed on top.
Cover the top and sides of the pie with the remaining batter. You may want to thwack the cake on the counter a couple of times to make sure there are no air pockets hiding between the pie and the side of the cake pan. Don't skip doing this to get the air bubbles out! Smooth the top.
Bake in a 350 F degree oven for 30-35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted at THE EDGE of the pan comes out with just a few crumbs.
NOTE: You are testing the sides because the pie is in the center and that will alter your results.
NOTE 2: Ovens vary and I baked my 1st cake an addtional 10 minutes. I've since made my 2nd cake and found additional minutes were required. Don't start testing until you've baked at least 30 minutes.
NOTE 3: Don't let the photo turn you away, this will be the bottom of the cake.
Let the cake cool in the pan for 15 minutes the turn it out upside down onto a cooling rack to cool completely. When the cake is cool, it’s time to make the ganache frosting.
MAKING THE GANACHE FROSTING:
Place the chopped chocolate in a bowl.
Heat the cream to a simmer then pour over the chocolate.
Let it sit for 1 minute then gently stir until the all the chocolate is melted and the ganache is smooth. Let it sit at room temperature for 25-35 minutes stirring occasionally until it is frosting consistency.
NOTE: It took about 45 to 55 minutes for this to come to a good frosting consistency.
Frost the top and sides of the upside-down cake and sprinkle with the chopped toasted pecans. NOTE: I placed waxed paper strips around cake before frosting for easy clean up.
NOTE: Make sure the cake and pie in center is completely cooled before frosting and cutting.