Prep Time : 30 Minutes | Cook Time : 40 Minutes | Total Time : 2 hours | Difficulty : Easy
Chocolate cake. Two words that promise so much and often deliver so little. Not any more. So chocolatey. So tender. Why is there chocolate on my pajama top? I don’t remember getting up… This stupidly easy cake is moist and packed with chocolate flavour that’s given extra punch with smoked chilli and cinnamon.
Let’s make some cake! Line the bottom of a 9 inch spring-form pan with baking paper. The easiest way to do this is to cut a square that is bigger than the bottom of the pan then secure the spring-form ring over it, holding it in place. Brush the sides of the pan with melted butter, dust with flour, then set aside.
Chop up some uber-dark chocolate roughly. Like really dark – the darkest and best you can find – I used 90% Lindt Excellence. Dice up some butter. Melt these together in a heatproof bowl over a pan of barely simmering water until you have dark liquid awesomeness. Set aside to cool. Using a stand mixer or hand held mixer whisk the eggs, sugar and vanilla until fluffy and pale. Beating the eggs properly is Very Important. The only lightness and air in this cake comes from this step as there are no other raising agents.
By hand, gently fold the cooled chocolate into the eggs until mixed through (I found my stand mixer struggled with this step as the chocolate sank under the eggs). You should be gently scooping through the batter and turning it over as you go – try to keep as much air in as possible! In a separate bowl mix the ground almonds and spices together so the spices are evenly distributed and any clumps of almonds are gone. Fold these into the chocolatey mixture until just mixed and pour the batter into the pan.
Straight into the oven at 170C (340F) for 30 to 40 minutes, turning halfway through. The cake is done when it’s firm, slightly risen and a toothpick inserted into the centre comes out clean.
Let the cake cool in the tin for 5-10 minutes before releasing the spring-form ring and sliding the cake onto a rack to cool completely. The slight rise will settle back to level as it cools.
When the cake is completely cold, ice with chocolate icing or pour over your favourite ganache – though obviously the real star today is my retro milk pan which I found while thrift shopping with girlfriends! Alternatively you could serve the cake warm with ice cream and chocolate sauce on the side – a great option for a fuss free dessert!
Flourless Mexican Chocolate Cake
Prep Time : 30 mins | Cook Time : 40 mins | Total Time : 2 hours | Difficulty : Easy | Makes : 1 x 9 inch cake
Chocolate, chocolate, chocolate, spice, chocolate, cake.
- 180 gm | 6.4 oz | dark chocolate (at least 85% cacao)
- 225 gm | 8 oz | 2 sticks butter
- 6 eggs
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 50 gm | 1.8 oz | 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 120 gm | 4.3 oz | 1/2 caster sugar
- 100 gm | 3.6 oz | 3/4 cup ground almonds
- 1 tsp smoked chipotle chilli flakes
- 1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- Chocolate Icing
- 250 ml | 8.5 fl oz | 1 cup cream
- 75 gm | 2.7 oz | caster sugar
- 85 gm | 3 oz dark chocolate (at least 85% cacao)
- 2 tbsp dutched cocoa powder
- 2 tbsp icing sugar
Preheat the oven to 170C (340F). Line the base of a 9 inch spring-form cake tin with baking paper. Brush the sides with melted butter, dust with flour and set aside.
Chop the chocolate finely and dice the butter. Heat together in a heatproof bowl over a pan of barely simmering water until melted and combined. Remove from the heat and set aside to cool. Mix the ground almonds and spices together until combined and there are no lumps. Set aside.
Whisk the eggs, sugar and vanilla together until fluffy and pale with a stand mixer or a hand-held electric beater. By hand, fold in the cooled chocolate mixture. The chocolate will sink to the bottom so make sure you scoop under as you fold. Fold in the almonds and spices.
Immediately pour into the prepared tin and bake for 30-40 minutes, turning halfway through. The cake is done when it’s firm, slightly risen and a toothpick inserted into the centre comes out clean. Remove from the oven and cool in the tin for 10 minutes before releasing and sliding onto a wire rack to cool completely. The slight rise will settle back to level as it cools.
While the cake is baking start the icing. Chop the chocolate finely and set aside. Heat the cream and sugar over a low heat until just below boiling – tiny bubbles will be starting to appear at the edges. Remove from the heat and stir in the chocolate with a whisk – it will take a while to combine so whisk a bit then leave it for a minute or so and whisk again. As it cools give it a whisk from time to time. When it’s completely cold give it a good whisk and if it’s not thickening to a nice spreadable consistency add 1 tbsp of cocoa powder and 1 tbsp of icing sugar and whisk again. At most it will take 2 tbsp of each to be smooth and spreadable.
When the cake is completely cold, ice the top and sides and decorate as you like.
Adapted from World’s Best Cakes.
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