This cake begins a spree of chocolate cakes, as I tried to find the perfect one. In a few posts, we'll see if I succeeded or not! (That's my teaser.)
I made Almost-Fudge Gateau, from the Dorie Greenspan book Baking: From My Home to Yours. It was FABULOUS! And so easy to put together. It's not flourless, but close. One of those cakes that melts in your mouth at every bite. Scrumptious.
The only problem I had was when it came time to do the frosting. You don't have to make the frosting; the cake's deliciousness will stand on its own. But we were having friends over and I wanted to complete the presentation. I was POSITIVE that I had cream in the fridge, and I practically turned the contents upside down trying to find it. Only as I was eating the cake an hour later did I finally remember that I had used it for something else two days earlier. They don't call me "Bad Memory Girl" for nothing.
I made a quick frosting with sweetened condensed milk, whole milk, and chocolate chips (I didn't want to use the really good chocolate for such a lousy frosting). It worked out okay, and I know a lot of people really like frostings with sweetened condensed milk, but it was too sweet for my taste. All the same, everyone enjoyed the cake.
No, Adam's pants are not on fire. No, he's not a liar, liar.
You can see the finger lines on the plate where Ella is licking it dry. I wouldn't let her have any more cake, so she is doing the next best thing.
(Dorie Greenspan, Baking: From My Home to Yours)
5 large eggs
9 ounces bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
1 cup of sugar
5 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into chunks
2 tablespoons water
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
Pinch of salt
For the Glaze (optional)
4 ounces bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
½ cup heavy cream
2 teaspoons light corn syrup
Center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter a 9-inch springform pan, line the bottom with parchment paper, butter the paper, dust the inside of the pan with flour and tap out the excess. Place the pan on a baking sheet lined with parchment or a silicone mat.
Separate the eggs, putting the whites in a mixer bowl or other large bowl and the yolks in a small bowl.
Set a heatproof bowl over a saucepan of simmering water and add the chocolate, sugar butter and coffee. Stir occasionally until the chocolate and butter are melted; the sugar may still be grainy, and that's fine. Transfer the bowl to the counter and let the mixture sit for 3 minutes.
Using a rubber spatula, stir in the yolks one by one, then fold in the flour.
Working with the whisk attachment of the mixer or a hand mixer, beat the egg whites with the pinch of salt until they hold firm, but glossy peaks. Using the spatula, stir about one quarter of the beaten whites into the batter, then gently fold in the rest. Scrape the butter into the pan and jiggle the pan from side to side a couple of times to even the batter.
Bake for 35 to 45 minutes, or until the cake has risen evenly (it might rise around the edges and you'll think it's done, but give it a few minutes more, and the center will puff too) and the top has firmed (it will probably be cracked) and doesn't shimmy when tapped; a thin knife inserted into the center should come out just slightly streaked with chocolate. Transfer the pan to a cooling rack and let the cake rest for 5 to 10 minutes.
Run a blunt knife gently around the edges of the cake and remove the sides of the pan. Carefully turn the cake over onto a rack and remove the pan bottom and the parchment paper. Invert the cake onto another rack and cool to room temperature right side up. As the cake cools, it may sink.
To Make the Optional Glaze: First, turn the cooled cake over onto another rack so you'll be glazing the flat bottom, and place the rack over a baking sheet lined with parchment or wax paper to catch any drips.
Put the chocolate in a small heatproof bowl.
Melt the chocolate over a pan of simmering water or in a microwave oven – the chocolate should be just melted and only warm, not hot. Meanwhile, bring the cream to a boil in a small sauce pan. Pour the hot cream over the chocolate and stir very gently with a rubber spatula until the mixture is smooth and shiny. Stir in the corn syrup.
Pour the glaze over the cake and smooth the top with a long metal icing spatula. Don't worry if the glaze drips unevenly down the sides of the cake – it will just add to its charms. Allow the glaze to set at room temperature or, if you're impatient, slip the cake into the refrigerator for about 20 minutes. If the glaze dulls in the fridge, just give it a little gentle heat from a hairdryer.