Flourless Chocolate Cake With A Twist.
There are times you just want chocolate. Easter Sunday for example. I know it’s already bee a couple of weeks since then but I still think about chocolate. And cake.
You say Easter and it generates something of a Pavlov response in me. Easter meant roasted leg of lamb, green beans with lots of garlic, new potatoes and chocolate in my family. It also seemed to be my grandmother’s favorite holiday, after Christmas. To this day, I still can remember the decorative chick and chickadees she would put in the middle of the table. The menu very rarely changed one year to the next and everyone would flock my grandparents' house for a long, well wined dinner.
Finding myself away from my family, near and far, this time last weekend left me with the urgency to gather some friends around and do something that would nourish my soul. Day to day routine can be heavy at times, often actually. I like certain routines but lately my husband is on a on and off calendar. His family is going through some pretty serious health issues at the moment and he spends one week with us here in Birmingham and one week back in Charleston. I didn’t care much for being alone with one pup on Easter weekend…
Don’t get me wrong, I can always find a movie to go see, a new restaurant to try, a recipe I’ve been meaning to develop or try from a new book or blog. But what could be more fun than doing it with friends? A couple of weekends ago, I gathered a couple of friends and we played in the kitchen pretty much all day. We picked a Mexican themed fiesta with lots and lots of dishes to be shared with friends, alongside a cold beer and a few good stories. Cinco de Mayo is right around the corner after all…
Oh did we cook! Stay tuned for more recipes and photos in the coming weeks!
There are so many fun recipes and shots from that day that I really don’t know where to start but I think a little chocolate can do everyone some good. In doubt, always start with dessert… This cake is completely flourless and a snap to make.
It is from Martha Stewart and was my go-to recipe in my pastry chef days because it didn’t require too many ingredients, thus very easy to remember. Served with salted butter caramel sauce.
Because chocolate and caramel go together like blue skies and sunshine. I added a bit of cinnamon and black pepper (yes) to add some kick to it and end our Mexican night on a lovely note.
We made two cakes, two different recipes, and one wouldn’t unmold well so we decided to just dig in. A dollop of creme fraiche (or many), a few spoons and plenty of laughs and we were in business!
Flourless Chocolate Cake, slightly adapted from Martha Stewart.
Props and photos by yours truly, food styling by Nathan Carrabba.
6 tablespoons unsalted butter
8 ounces bittersweet chocolate
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground cardamon
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
6 large eggs separated
1/2 cup granulated sugar
Preheat the oven to 275 degrees with a cooking rack in the middle. Spray the bottom and sides of a 9inch
springform pan with cooking spray (I brush a little oil instead). Set aside.
Place butter and chocolate in a large heatproof bowl set over a pot of simmering water. Melt on low heat, stirring constantly. You could do this in microwave in 30 second increments, but I do not own one (personal choice).
each time, until completely melted. Let cool slightly. Add the cinnamon, cardamom, black pepper and vanilla. Whisk in egg yolks.
In a large bowl, or stand mixer with the whisk attachment, beat the egg whites until soft peaks form. Gradually add granulated sugar, and continue beating until stiff peaks form.
Fold 1/4 of the egg whites into the chocolate mixture, do not worry about keeping air and volume. You are just trying to loosen up the chocolate mixture with the egg whites at this point.
Now, gently fold in remaining egg whites, in two or three times.
Pour batter into the prepared pan, and smooth the top with a rubber spatula.
Bake for about 45 minutes, or until a knife inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool completely. Remove from the pan and serve with caramel sauce or ice cream.
Salted Butter Caramel Sauce:
1 cup granulated sugar
3 tablespoons water1 stick (115gr) salted butter at room temperature, cut into small pieces
1 cup heavy whipping cream
In a heavy saucepan set over low heat, combine the sugar and water. Cook just until the sugar is dissolved. Add the butter. Let it come to a boil and cook until it reaches a golden caramel color.
Remove from the heat and add the cream ( it will splatter and get crazy). Whisk to combine and put back on the stove. Let it come to a boil again over low heat and cook 10 minutes.
June Burns April 21, 2015 um 1:37 am
That looks amazing! Flourless chocolate cake is always perfect 🙂 Love the addition of caramel!
Sophie // The Cake Hunter April 21, 2015 um 7:32 am
I kind of just want to put my face in that cake smash photo. Looks so good!
Anonymous April 21, 2015 um 7:35 am
Wow-kay, this looks dangerously good. I'm definitely craving chocolate now.
Anna April 21, 2015 um 10:55 am
your photography… stunning!!
Nigella Bleu April 21, 2015 um 12:45 pm
Can't wait to try this one! Normally make gluten-free just for the husband. Surely will sample this one as well! MAYBE will let the boys nibble a bit too…:)
Julie April 21, 2015 um 1:05 pm
This looks amazing. I just drool over your photos and look at your book when setting up my own photos. Thank you for sharing.
Kate April 21, 2015 um 2:26 pm
Looks so lovely! Can't wait to try it out…though, I'm wondering exactly how much whipping cream to add to the caramel at the end?
Yized | novojun April 21, 2015 um 2:47 pm
Chocolate is always good! ^^
That cake looks delicious; my mouth is watering from just looking at the pictures. Very intrigued by the black pepper… I think I'm going to have to give this a try.
Thanks for sharing!
cristina April 21, 2015 um 3:12 pm
What a gorgeous flourless choco cake. Must be spicy with the cinnamon and black pepper…on my list of must-makes especially for my Mom who is GF. Looking forward to your posts on what you were making for your fiesta theme! 🙂
Kiran @ KiranTarun.com April 21, 2015 um 5:33 pm
Looks utterly delicious!! Love flourless chocolate cake 🙂
Sandrine April 21, 2015 um 5:38 pm
Ooooh I like the caramel twist… and can picture a happy mess in the kitchen.
Recipe to be tried… soon…
Janice April 21, 2015 um 10:02 pm
this looks so delicious!! And the photos are amazing! Forgot to tell you in my email!
Janice April 21, 2015 um 10:19 pm
This cake looks gorgeous and delicious! Thanks for your thoughts earlier today.
Life Images by Jill April 24, 2015 um 6:09 am
it's my daughter-in-laws birthday this week, and she loves chocolate, so I think I might be making this for her! thanks – looks so yummy!
Rocky Mountain Woman April 24, 2015 um 4:47 pm
Yep, that's the one I want tonight!
Brussels Guy April 25, 2015 um 5:50 pm
I just want to jump into the picture and taste this chocolate cake. Crazy pictures, nice recipe!
Danielle May 16, 2015 um 5:05 am
Miam! Quelles photos appétissantes!
Je vais sûrement essayer cette recette.
Sandrine June 1, 2015 um 12:12 pm
Bonjour and Happy Bday late,
… In the kitchen, baking my own Bday cake… It will be flourless chocolate cake this year. I'm about to try this recipe with Long Java Pepper… I was wondering when to add the vanilla extract… Thank you,
Ozymandias June 7, 2015 um 7:32 pm
I've noticed in the recipe for the caramel that you cooked the sugar after adding the butter. I always cook the sugar before adding the fats. Does using your method make any difference to the final result or is it all the same in terms of flavour (assuming of course that you stick to the same proportions and ingredients)?
Helene June 8, 2015 um 2:08 pm
Ozymandias: both methods work equally well.