Well, May has come and gone along with numerous birthdays, holidays and celebrations. In fact, the birthdays are not yet over – more to came in June, including my own. Although I didn’t bake myself goodies, since a) baking for others has done enough damage to my waistline – thank you very much; b) I think I deserve a day off on my bday; and c) I’ve never been one to bake for myself – I need a reason other than because I wanted a chocolate chip cookie, or chocolate cake, or fill in the blank…. I will make up excuses to bake, but baking because I want something just for me has never been one of them. I guess that would feel just too indulgent. (I’m all for self deprivation!!! – well no, not really. It’s more like self-deception).
I have said this before and I will say this again, when I bake for special occasions, I rarely aim for low-fat, vegan, or anything in particular.
I want dessert to taste good — darn good. And in certain circumstances, all concerns for health are thrown out the window. This is one of those darn good, oh my gawd! good, desserts. So good, that the original recipe is entitled “Flourless Chocolate Decadence.” This recipe gets pulled out rarely, I save it for when it is needed. In this case, my parents 40th wedding anniversary. It is reliable, and trustworthy, not simple, but if followed precisely, you will be happy. Trust me – I have made some modifications with disastrous results. So read this one ALL the way through, get your stuff together and it will be perfect.
This is a cheesecake without the cheese. (BTW – on a healthful perspective, I rate eggs above cheese any day) Fudgy. Very chocolate. Dense. I fully suggest serving with fresh fruit to cut the density. Serve in small pieces.
Decor by my daughter. A large snowflake (with hearts, of course) made from wax paper, laid on top of the cake and sprinkled with icing sugar.
Flourless chocolate cake
- 1 pound bittersweet or semi-sweet chocolate coarsely chopped
- 10 Tbsp unsalted butter cut into 10 pieces
- 5 large egg yolks
- 5 large egg whites
- 1/4 tsp cream of tartar
- 1 Tbsp sugar
- Powdered sugar for topping
- Preheat oven to 325. Grease the sides of a 8 x 2 in round cake pan and line the bottom with wax or parchment paper. Don't use a springform pan. You are going to bake the cake in a water bath - a springform might leak.
- In large glass bowl, add chocolate and butter and melt in the microwave. You could use a double-boiler for this, and I have, but I find the microwave much easier and much easier to control. Using the microwave, stir chocolate every 30 secs. Or use the butter / chocolate melting setting if you have it.
- Remove chocolate mixture from the heat and whisk in egg yolks.
- In a stand mixer with a whisk attachment (you could use a hand-held mixer or just a whisk) beat egg whites and cream of tartar on medium speed until soft peaks form. Turn to high-speed, and gradually add the 1 Tbsp sugar.
- Beat on high-speed until stiff peaks form, but not dry.
- Put the kettle on. 😉 you will thank me later for telling you this now.
- Using a rubber spatula, fold in 1/4 of the egg whites into the chocolate mixture. Then fold in the remaining egg whites. GENTLY You want to get the egg whites incorporated, but you don't want to beat them down. If you leave strips of white in the chocolate mixture, you will see the strips in the final product -- so mix, just enough....
- Pour batter into prepared pan and spread evenly. Set the pan in a large roasting pan or large shallow baking dish and set this into the oven. Pour enough hot boiling water into the roasting pan until it reaches halfway up the sides of the cake pan.
- Bake for exactly 30 mins. The top of the cake will have a thin crust on top, but still be wobbly and gooey in the middle. Set the cake in its cake pan on a rack to cool completely. Then chill in the refrigerator, preferably overnight.
- To unmold, slide a knife around the edge of the cake pan, invert the cake and peel off the paper lining the bottom. Re Invert the cake onto a serving platter.
- Serve at room temperature.