While some of my friends went out of town for the holiday weekend, I relaxed and rebooted. I finally tried Ink Eats & Drinks on Friday night, where I had a delicious grilled cheese sandwich and caught up with some old friends of mine.I finished one of the best books I’ve ever read, Angela’s Ashes, and then dived into another keeper, Julie & Julia.
I watched Good Luck Chuck which I don’t recommend unless you are looking to waste an hour or two of your life. Sunday, I grabbed lunch with some new friends at Crepeville where I had a tasty chicken pesto crepe that was to die for. Overall, it was a weekend all about fun.
Another weekend highlight for me was testing out this weeks recipe from my friends at Tuesday’s With Dorie. I missed last weeks entry due to school and this week I was ready for my official inauguration. The Almost-Fudge Gateau was on the agenda and it was impressive.
Dark, rich, and yet surprisingly lighter than other flourless chocolate cakes, I fell in love with this cake right from the start. My main complaint about flourless cakes is that they pack a big powerful punch in just one small bite. So overpowering that it leaves you satisfied with one bite.
But this cake’s texture differs from the rest, thanks to the whipped egg whites. It has a softer, spongier inside which works well with the decadent dark chocolate ganache that garnishes the cake. Originally, the cake called for bittersweet chocolate in both the cake and the ganache, but I was out so I made do with semi-sweet inside the cake and dark chocolate for the ganache.
This was the first time I’d made ganache and wow. Talk about a perfect frosting! Silky smooth and velvety, I could easily see myself bathing in this stuff. Mmmm talk about yummy. To make this cake more tailored to my tastes, I used Frangelico liqueur in lieu of coffee, and added some to the ganache glaze as well. The hazelnut liqueur complements the deep chocolate flavor and the ganache had a nice bite to it thanks to the liqueur.
Thanks to Nikki at Crazy Delicious for making me try this new cake. Throughout the weekend, I have taken slices here and there so you can imagine my surprise when I went back to forage for one last slice and found that almost half the cake had been eaten. Where had it gone?!
Oh wait. Where did that nice food baby come from?
Well, what can I say? I like to bake my cake and eat it too. Head over to Nikki at Crazy Delicious for a big round-up of this weeks TWD event. I can’t wait for my next Tuesday spent with the best baking book ever.
Almost Fudge Gateau
from Baking: From my home to yours
5 large eggs
9 ounces bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped (I used semi-sweet chocolate)
1 cup of sugar
5 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into chunks
2 tablespoons coffee or water (I used Frangelico liqueur)
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
Pinch of salt
For the Glaze (optional)
4 ounces bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped (I used dark chocolate)
½ cup heavy cream
2 teaspoons light corn syrup (I used Frangelico liqueur)
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 n 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 the 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 think 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 ride 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.