MY NEW FAVORITE FLOURLESS CHOCOLATE CAKE
i now believe i found the perfect flourless chocolate cake. as stated before in previous posts...most all flourless chocolate cakes are going to be delicious...that's a given, BUT most are very difficult to serve. i usually end up with little chocolate crumbles on me, the table, the floor. chocolate mess is not a bad thing, but i like the presentation to look as good as the cake will taste.
THIS IS A SPECTACULAR CAKE
smooth, rich dark chocolate
fudgy, yet light
not overly sweet
a perfect canvas for extras
serves like a charm
a definite crowd pleaser
the original recipe comes from Gourmet Magazine, Nov. '97.
i decided in my usual fashion that it needed a little something extra. i can't help myself.
Guittard dark chocolate
vanilla bean paste
a little espresso
a sprinkle of cinnamon
and, of coarse...a pinch of chipotle
oh...and don't forget
THE CANDIED BACON !
CLASSIC FLOURLESS CHOCOLATE CAKE
with a spicy Mexican twist
original from Gourmet Magazine Nov. '97
for the cake...
4 oz dark or bittersweet chocolate, chopped small and evenly
(i used Guittard 61% coverture discs)
1/2 cup butter
3/4 cup sugar. i used super fine sugar
3 large eggs
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup good cocoa powder, again...i used Guittard
1/2 tsp(slightly rounded) cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground chipotle powder
1 tsp powdered espresso
preheat oven to 375F. line an 8 inch cake pan OR i used an 8 inch spring form pan. line the bottom and sides with parchment and lightly butter or grease the parchment. the sides might not be necessary, but that's what i did.
in a small bowl add the cocoa powder, cinnamon, espresso and chipotle. whisk to combine and set aside.
in another small bowl add the chocolate and butter. use either the microwave or a double boiler to slowly melt the chocolate/butter until smooth and shiny.
pour warm chocolate mixture into medium mixing bowl with the sugar. whisk to combine well. now whisk in eggs one at a time, waiting until each has been fully incorporated to add the next. add the vanilla.
sift cocoa powder mixture into the chocolate mixture and whisk until WELL combined.
pour into prepared pan. bake for approximately 25 minutes. i turned the cake after 15 minutes. start watching after 20 minutes. mine took about 23 minutes. toothpick should come out clean with moist crumbs attached.
allow cake to cool for 5 minutes. if necessary, run a knife around the edges and invert onto serving platter.
NOTE...since i was going to ganache the cake i inverted onto a piece of parchment on a cooling rack.
let cake cool completely.
for the ganache...
6 oz good dark chocolate, again Guittard 61% coverture discs
6 oz heavy cream
1 tsp clear corn syrup
prepare your cake for ganaching...choose your "nice side", either the top or the bottom. put cake on an 8 inch round that you will serve off of. use cardboard or i used the removable 8" bottom from a tart pan. set cake on a rack over a sheet pan to catch the ganache "fall-off". you will want to save this for truffles or just a big spoon-to-mouth.
chop chocolate into even small pieces and set aside in a glass bowl. (i like to wrap a kitchen towel around the bottom to keep the working ganche cozy). warm cream and syrup in a small sauce pan until just a boil. pour hot cream over chopped chocolate and let sit for 1 minute. begin to gently stir from the middle. take your time, you will see the ganAche magically come together. now stir to fully incorporate and there are no lumps and it is nice a shiny.
pour warm liquidy ganache over cake...starting with a pool in the middle and spiral out wards. work fairly quickly so it does not set. pick up the cake and jiggle the ganAche so that it covers the whole top. it is a messy job, but you will get the hang of it.
DO NOT go back and try to fix the top, but you can gently add to the sides where the chocolate might have missed while dripping off.
add chopped CANDIED BACON in the middle for appearance or all over for pure indulgence. NOTE that the bacon does not make for a clean slice, but i'm sure you can work around it. LOL !
let cake sit to set undisturbed until serving. you may refrigerate, but you must take it out of the fridge at least an hour or two ahead so that the condensation from temperature change slowly disappears.
for the CANDIED BACON....
preheat oven to 390F convection.
this can be done the day ahead, but you will need to re-crisp the bacon in the oven before using. line a cookie sheet with heavy duty aluminum foil. lay out as many pieces of bacon you can...extra will disappear before you can get it on the cake. set timer for 15 minutes, but don't go far the first time trying until you get it down. remove from oven and pour off excess fat into a heat safe glass dish...you might want to save the bacon fat as I DO to use for "bacon-butter". flip the bacon. sprinkle the slices with brown sugar, cinnamon and chipotle powder or chili powder or cayenne if you want some heat. put back in the oven until good and crispy. remove from oven and let cool on wire rack. if it is not crispy enough when cooled...put them in the oven on the wire rack and watch carefully...do not let them burn. save in air tight container with parchment. if using them later you might want to re-crisp them a bit.