Thursday, December 04, 2008

Appreciating fellow bloggers: Gourmet Girl's flourless chocolate cake

Bringing you this flourless chocolate cake was a labor of love. I made this as one of two Thanksgiving desserts with the ulterior motive of photographing it and posting the recipe for you, but of course, I ran out of time and never photographed it. Determined to share this wonderful recipe, I made it again a few days later but I thought I’d second-guess the instructions and cook it for five minutes less. When I unmolded the cake from the springform pan, it spread out into a chocolaty puddle of $25 Valrhona – becoming un-photographable and teaching me a lesson: do not second-guess the recipe (note: it still tasted great!).

A little annoyed but nevertheless still determined, I set off to make it again yesterday. This time I took my time and followed the tried and true recipe. It churned out the best version of the cake I have made yet: rich, dense and moist with a light crust on the top. It’s very sinful dessert, and one that looks more impressive than it is hard to make.

Where did I find this gem? On Gourmet Girl’s (Louisiana-based Katia Mangham) great site. It takes a lot for me to get motivated to make something I read about. I read dozens of blogs and many cooking-related magazines and have a treasure trove of recipe books. With that much fodder for culinary creativity I need to really be impressed by a new recipe for it to actually get to the top of my “to try” list. Gourmet Girl’s site always gets me. She has wonderful, unusual original recipes that are sure to be crowd pleasers. I also tried her wonderful Torta di Risso - faboo.

The only things I altered in the recipe were to remove the brandy, increase the quantity of vanilla extract to one tablespoon, and use semi-sweet chocolate for the garnish (I'm a monochromatic girl). See her original post here.

Flourless chocolate cake (from Gourmet Girl)

24 oz. dark or semi-sweet chocolate, chopped
3/4 lb butter (3 sticks)
1/2 cup sugar
8 eggs
1/4 cup Brandy
1 teaspoon vanilla
4 oz. white chocolate, melted after cake cools- for garnish

1. butter a 9" springform pan, line bottom with parchment and butter parchment. Wrap pan in aluminum foil and set aside. Preheat oven to 350 F. (Cookbook Catchall note: at this point, I fill my roasting pan half full of water and allow it to preheat in the oven so that the bain marie water mentioned in step 4 is hot by the time I put the cake into it).

2. Over a bain marie, melt chocolate and butter. whisk together until smooth, then set aside to cool for a bit.

3. In a mixer bowl, beat eggs and sugar until light and fluffy- about 10 minutes on high speed. Lower speed to low and gradually add chocolate mixture to eggs. Add brandy and vanilla, and mix until just incorporated. Remove bowl from mixer stand, with a rubber spatula lighlty fold batter just to be sure it's homogenized. (sometimes there is chocolate at the bottom of the bowl which has not mixed in).

4. Pour batter into springform, then place pan in a roasting pan. Fill roasting pan with hot water (I use the water use the already warm bain marie water), fill pan to half way up the saide of the springform pan. Carefully place in the oven and bake 45 minutes. Cool on a wire rack, unmold, drizzle white chocolate on top and serve with whipped cream and berries.


Anonymous said...

do you think an 8" springform pan might work?? I can always buy another one, but... :)

Katia Mangham said...

Thank you Sabra! I appreciate your comments and readership ... I admire your cooking and photography a great deal so it is a wonderful complement! I'm glad the cake turned out well for you. :)
After Christmas we need to talk about the book... I meet with the graphic designer tomorrow (I am very excited)! I am looking forward to meeting you when you come to nola. xoxo

Unknown said...

I missed the SLW last edition, goodness where have I been? I am wondering how you did that photo. I should have tried out myself heehhe.. Love chocolate cake!!

Y said...

Thanks for going the extra mile to share this cake with us. I can't possibly not try it out now that you've gone to so much effort :D

Cannelle Et Vanille said...

Sabra, that is beautiful. Not only the cake looks like a chocolate bomb but the capturing the black on black. Gorgeous!

Anonymous said...

Yep.delicious. I tasted it, and it was somewhere between a truffle and fudge. Very impressive. Think I will try it with the original brandy in it. How bad can that be?!

Jescel said...

all i can say is wow! i love your work. and the cake, sounds like a must-try.

Anonymous said...

I am the auntie who got to eat the first version for Thanksgiving, and I must report that it is the greatest cake ever. If you love chocolate, it's a sublime fix.

Anonymous said...

ooh. stunning. glad to see you back to blogging.

Sabra said...

Hi everyone!
Radish: I'm sure 8" would work - you'll just have to adjust the cooking time as appropriate.
Katia: glad you enjoyed- can't wait to talk to you about the book!
Arfi: back to black was fun- you should try!
Thanks Y, Aran, "Anonymous" and Jescel! (x)
Catchall fan, o one in disguise - thanks for all of your regular comments!

Anonymous said...

This chocolate cake looks so beautiful with the colors, I'm sure it'll be a big hit with the kids! Nice colors! Although I'm to a big fan of chocolate cake, this sure looks yummy! I'm normally the one that will say no to chocolate cake.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for this beautiful chocolate cake, it looks very delicious.

Keri said...

Yes, it looks like a little something from heaven. I just love it. Nice blog, great photos, I've really enjoyed my snoop around.

Hope you'll stop in on my sandwich blog some time, we can always use another pair of gourmet eyes. Keri

Chocolate Gift said...

It is exactly look alike the cake I was ate yesterday.So delicious and full of chocolates moist between.


Chocolate Gift said...

It is exactly look alike the cake I was ate yesterday.So delicious and full of chocolates moist between.


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