Tuesday, October 6, 2015

flourless chocolate cake

Earlier this year, Nashville experienced a glorious week.  Well, in my mind it was glorious.  For one, full week we had enough snow and ice to warrant being out of school five days in a row.  Especially being in a private school in the south, you just don't come by such an experience too many times. And what I loved about it, is everyone was, for the most part, forced to stop and breathe.  The city, in a way, came to a standstill, and our family soaked up every second together we could.

Setting up a card table in the living room in front of the fireplace, we pulled out a 1000 piece puzzle, looped "Andy Griffith" on Netflix, and fired up the oven and stove.  I'm telling you, I pulled stuff out of the deep freezer, the lazy Susan, the pantry, and the back of the fridge.  We had the time of our lives. And the sledding wasn't too shabby, either! 

It was during this stint that I came upon a fantastic flourless cake recipe from King Arthur.  Man, how I love their site!  I could spend hours there, and there's no doubt I would LOVE to go visit them someday.  Their site beckons, "Come visit our Vermont campus…"

Sends chills right through me, I tell ya!

This is a rich, decadent dessert, and it calls for vanilla ice cream like nobody's business.  With my previously-posted homemade five-ingredient version (Plain 'Ol Vanilla Ice Cream), you probably have the ingredients on hand and can almost always make a quart, with no trouble.

I hope you'll find a reason to make this soon.  In fact, if you find the good Lord grants you another day tomorrow, I think you just found your reason!

Flourless Chocolate Cake

makes one 8-inch round cake

For the cake:

1 cup semi-sweet or bittersweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup unsalted butter
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1-2 tsp espresso powder
1 tsp vanilla extract
3 large eggs
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

For the glaze:

1 cup semisweet or bittersweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup heavy cream

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees; lightly grease an 8-inch round cake pan.  Cut a piece of parchment paper to fit the bottom of the pan and lightly spray with non-stick spray.  

2. To make the cake, put the chocolate and butter inside a bowl and heat in a microwave until butter is melted and chips are softened.  Stir until the chips are melted, reheating as needed.  You can also do this in a saucepan over boiling water.  Transfer to a mixing bowl.

3. Stir in sugar, salt, espresso powder and vanilla.  One teaspoon powder will enhance the flavor, while two will give it a mocha flair.  

4. Add the eggs, beating briefly until smooth.  Add the cocoa powder and mix just until combined.  Spoon powder into prepared pan.

5. Bake the cake for 25 minutes.  The top will have formed a thin crust and it should register 200 degrees on an instant-read thermometer inserted into the center.

6. Remove from oven and cool in a pan for 5 minutes.  

7. Loosen edge of pan with a table knife or nylon spreader and place on plate.  The top will now be the bottom.  The edges will crumble just a bit; that is fine.  Let completely cool.  

8. To make glaze, combine chocolate and cream and heat in microwave until cream is very hot but not simmering.  Remove from heat and stir until chocolate is melted and mixture is completely smooth.  

9. Spoon the glaze over the cake, allowing it to drip just a bit over the sides.  Allow the glaze to sit for several hours before serving.  

*Tips and Tricks - For cleanest slicing, cut with sharp knife dipped in hot water and wiped clean.  Repeat this process for each piece sliced.  

Recipe from King Arthur