Flourless Chocolate Cake

A milestone slipped past last week.

I took note of it, but said nothing because there was no point in celebrating unless there was cake.

Slice of Cake III

Actually, the original plan was to make a salted caramel tart but, once again, pastry bested me. One day, pastry. One day! Truth be told, it was flaky as all get out and tasted great, but uneven rolling led to some parts being more cooked than others and there were slumping and shrinking issues. My theory is that I’m actually not putting enough weight in when pre-baking and then taking the beans out too quickly. It worked much better with the second shell, which didn’t slump as much, but the unevenness of the baked pastry was a little more than this mostly-perfectionist could handle.

No matter, there was a back-up plan. Albeit one that would have to wait until post-milestone.

See, it’s my blog’s third birthday.

Three years.

Craziness.

I remember first broaching the idea with some friends after we had been out at the pub. We were outside, in the frigid cold, saying goodnight when I just sort of threw it out there. “I’m thinking of starting a food blog.”

And since then there have been many baking projects and, thankfully, many happy eaters. (A special thanks must go to the Civilized Sunday crew at the Herald who willingly — and, occassionally, expectantly — ate what I brought to work on the weekend shift. Cake for breakfast? Yeah, that was a good tradition.

There have been amazing times  and incredibly tough times.

So, I’m interested to see what the next year (and more) will bring.

For the last three years, I’ve kicked off the start of a new blogging year with cake. First, there was the inaugural Red Velvet Cake (wee bit embarrassed by the photos back then, but moving along), followed by a much-better version for my first blogiversary and then a triple layer chocolate cake last year.

This year is only slightly different. It’s still cake, but it’s a decadent and rich, truffle-like Flourless Chocolate Cake.

Slice of Cake II

At least in this case, unlike the pastry situation, slumping is expected.

This cake is deeply, darkly rich, ironically lightened by a topping of whipping and sour creams, beaten with icing sugar. (Or, if you think you have tons because there’s always about six bags in the cupboard where they appear to multiply like bunnies until the day you need some and then there isn’t any, a little bit of berry sugar will do the trick.) And it is Oh. So. Good.

I actually heard about it over Twitter from the gang at Real Simple one day. Made it a few days later for friends and was still thinking about it months later and how I really needed to make it again. That’s the sign of a good cake, I figure. (Original recipe here. Though I haven’t really made any changes.)

Baking like this is so lovely. I especially love adding the chopped chocolate to the hot butter-and-cream mixture and then stirring, stirring, stirring as it changes from a curdled-looking mass to silky smooth melted chocolate. And how it comes out of the oven all puffy and light looking before collapsing into a deeply dark slump of rich chocolate cake. The slight tang in the dollop of the whipped cream takes it to a whole new level.

I ate one slice and gave the rest away to friends. Now, as it nears bedtime, I wish I had saved myself just another sliver. Ah well. Reason to make it again soon.

This recipe is fantastic, but I would add a pinch or two of salt. I really feel that a tiny bit of salt in sweet things rounds them out. In this case, I didn’t quite have enough unsalted butter, so about half of the butter was salted. I think it worked perfectly and I may do this from now on. Only have unsalted? Just add a pinch or two of regular table salt.

Chopped Chocolate

Melted Chocolate

Batter in Pan

Puffed out of the oven

Slumped cake

Cake Slice I

Flourless Chocolate Cake

  • 1 cup unsalted butter, cut into pieces, plus more for the pan
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder, plus more for the pan
  • 1 1/4 cups whipping (heavy) cream, divided
  • 8 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped
  • 5 large eggs
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1/4 cup icing sugar, plus more for dusting
Heat oven to 350° F. Butter a 9-inch springform pan and dust with cocoa powder.
In a medium saucepan, heat the butter with ¼ cup of the whipping cream over medium-low heat until the butter is melted. Add the chocolate and stir until melted and smooth; remove from heat.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, granulated sugar, and cocoa powder; whisk in the chocolate mixture.
Transfer the batter to the prepared pan and bake until puffed and set, 35 to 40 minutes. Let cool in the pan for 1 hour. Run a knife around the edge of the cake before unmolding.
Using an electric mixer, beat the remaining 1 cup of whipping cream with the sour cream and icing sugar until soft peaks form. Dust the cake with confectioners’ sugar and serve with the whipped cream.

  10 comments for “Flourless Chocolate Cake

  1. April 24, 2011 at 10:09 pm

    Aw, happy bloggiversary! Here’s to lots more awesome times, and many more cakes. xo

  2. April 24, 2011 at 10:34 pm

    Happy Anniversary! That cake looks delicious! I’ll definitely have to try it out.

  3. April 24, 2011 at 10:38 pm

    Happy Birthday, dear Patent and the Pantry! I looked through your archives, and as it happens, my site is only hours younger than yours. Isn’t it amazing how time flies? May there be many many more birthdays and cakes!

    Also, my mom has always had trouble with pie crusts. They would never ever turn out right – oddly enough, it was only when she made gluten-free ones that they worked. So, perhaps that could help! (and I’d love to bake them with you, Gwendolyn).

  4. Byn
    April 25, 2011 at 7:39 am

    happy blogiversary!!! i’ll make a toast to you when i mix up my first batch of foxy lady rhubarb cocktails! (as soon as the farmer’s market near my house opens and i get my hands on some rhubarb)

  5. Val B.
    April 25, 2011 at 10:41 am

    Congrats and here’s to many more delicious posts!
    I too am bested by pastry, which is annoying because my mother is a master of the stuff. I follow her recipe (on the Tenderflake lard box) and I’ve taken lessons from her, but my pastry NEVER turns out as good as hers. I figure it’s a Zen thing involving a cool head and cool hands.

  6. JoDee
    April 25, 2011 at 1:10 pm

    Happy Blogiversary! I can’t wait to taste this new recipe. Chocolate and cake, two of my favourite things combined. Yum!! As usual, this blog never disappoints.

  7. Jamie
    April 25, 2011 at 1:11 pm

    Happy Blogiversary!

    May the tradition of cake-eating for breakfast – and the rapid, sugar-fuelled descent from “civilized” to “uncivilized” Sundays – reign supreme, always.

  8. Colette
    April 25, 2011 at 1:26 pm

    What Jamie said…
    And a very happy blogiversary indeed! Many, many more years of happy baking and blogging to come…

  9. April 27, 2011 at 1:58 pm

    Happy blog anniversary! I’ve made a flourless cake before and it is my most favorite cake probably. Yum!

  10. June 12, 2011 at 7:33 pm

    I’m totally drooling. That cake looks decadent! Happy blogiversary. You take such amazing pictures and have delicious recipes. Thanks for sharing. I love stopping by.

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