March 27, 2012

dark and decadent

Dear Dark and Decadent Chocolate Cake,

This was not a good hiding spot.

No, not a good hiding spot at all. You quickly morphed from a loaf into a sliver and I think it's fair to say that you can blame that on your inability to hide, from me. Yes, this is a two person household, but it only took one to finish (and start) you off. We would have made a good magic act - Aabra Ka Daabra, pop, pow, (chew - swallow), vanish. Next time you're going in the cupboard, out of plain site, at least during snack time. And let's be honest, it's always snack time, so you best get cozy between those random canned goods on the top shelf.

oh and by the way, in case you feel slighted, you should know...

your darling dearest,

This cake is similar to the raspberry flourless chocolate cake I made back around Thanksgiving, however, it's much smaller and thus doesn't demand a celebration, just a typical Monday night will do. It is amazingly dense, so much so that you can cut the thinest sliver and it won't break into crumbs. I know because I ate this cake by the 1/4 inch sliver, and that was a lot of slivers.

I made it on a Monday and it was gone, poof, by Friday. Zach helped a tiiiiny bit and so did my friend Jess, but mostly it was just me and the cake, mano-a-mano. I ate it for a snack, I ate it as an hors d'oeuvre, I ate it for dessert, I ate it for lunch and I ate it for breakfast. This cake succumbs to no social pressures or rules about when it is okay to eat cake. Just eat it when ever you feel like it, which will pretty much be all the time.

Oh and did I mention, it's super easy to make?

Gateua Therese
David Leibovitz - The Sweet Life in Paris

* The woman who gave David Leibovitz this recipe recommended that you make it two days ahead of when you want to serve it, that it improves the flavor. I have no idea how anyone waits that long, but I do remember the cake getting better with I ate it...sliver by sliver

- 9 oz / 250g bittersweet or semisweet chocolate
- 8 tablespoons/115g unsalted butter
- 1/3 cup of sugar
- 4 large eggs, at room temperature, separated
- 2 tablespoons flour
- pinch of salt

Preheat then oven to 350ºF/180ºC. Butter a 9inch/23cm loaf pan and line the bottom with a strip of parchment paper.

In a double boiler, or bowl set over a pot of simmering water, melt the chocolate and butter together until smooth.

Remove from heat and stir in half of the sugar, the egg yolks and flour

Using a mixer, beat the egg whites and salt until soft peaks begin to form. Beat in the rest of the sugar and whip until the whites are smooth and hold their shape.

Use a rubber spatula to fold 1/3 of the egg whites until the chocolate mix. Once incorporated fold in the remaining egg whites just until the mixture is smooth and no white streaks are visible.

Scrape the batter into the loaf pan and bake for 35 minutes until the cake feels slightly firm in the center. Do not overbake (i take mine out at exactly 35 min). Let the cake cool in the pan. It will collapse, don't worry, it is supposed to, that's what makes it fudgy and gooey. Let it cool to room temperature before serving.

I had to escape the kitchen and the cake and so I went for a variety of long walks last week. The weather here has been beautiful, as I hear it has been a lot of other places as well. I'm sure all this March sunshine means it will snow in July, which just means I'll have to go to Southern Spain in July - no big deal.

Did I mention that this cake could easily be considered fudge. I mean look at that gooey middle! So decadent and dark and delicious. Oy! So delicious that I've made this cake three times in the last week. I'm not kidding. The first one was for me, and then I made another for Laura and Sam, and I just pulled one out of the oven a few minutes ago so I can bring it to book club tonight. This is one of those cakes that needs to be shared, and loved, and devoured.
cake and tulips and sunshine - last week was a good week!


  1. the only safe place for sweets is the freezer, around these parts. With no microwave, defrosting becomes at least an hour of deterrence. ;) lovely, talley. happy spring to you :)

  2. I remember reading about this cake in Lebovitz's Sweet Life in Paris book and thinking of how good it sounded! Now the real question is why didn't I make it why I first saw it -- it looks like I've been missing out on so much! Seriously, I have got to make this soon. Love how fudgy and dense it is. And by the way, I am a total "sliver-eater" too when it comes to treats laying around the house. There's no calories in slivers... or something like that? Haha anyway thanks for sharing, Talley, and lovely photos as always.

  3. Yum! Talley, I am going to make this tonight in celebration of.... Friday? Spring? Lovely photos as usual... I want to be in Europe. The inside of that cake looks so moist and delicious and dense!

  4. This looks incredibly delicious. My husband is no help in the dessert department either. So annoying. I made butterscotch budino this week, something I have been want to make forever, and Ben, who doesn't like butterscotch, hasn't even taken a bite. Again, very annoying. He loves chocolate, however. This cake might just tempt him!

  5. Talley, I love your love letter to this cake. I am not usually a fan of chocolate cake (I'm sort of indifferent to it, not averse), but this cake looks so fudgy that even I am tempted. And I'm always looking for an excuse to get out the copper beating bowl and whipping up some egg whites. Love the photo of the cake collapsed in the pan. Hope the weather holds up for you!

  6. very similar to the boule de neige I made years ago for a restaurant named Souffle...fab and extremely easy to eat! Well done. Only wish I could live in Paris, too!

  7. Nice love letter to the dark and decadent chocolate cake you love. But I think he also got my heart. I know we love the dark and soft centered kinda of type.

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