One, it hits you with its intensely rich chocolate flavour. Two, the cake is lusciously moist and it almost melts in your mouth. Three, the subtle flavour of orange somehow manages to cut through the rich chocolate flavour, coyly, teasing your senses.
This plain and unadorned cake may look unattractive to its counterparts; however, I have always been a firm believer in the line – “never judge a book by its cover“. Character trumps looks. Taste trumps appearance. This adage rings especially true in this instance.
I was just thinking…you know about lazy days where you just crave for instant gratification; where you just want to grab a bar of chocolate to satisfy your sweet tooth there and then; where you want to tuck into a hearty, homecooked meal but you don’t wish to put in the effort. I think this cake ought to be on my (and yours) list of quick and easy bakes for a lazy afternoon. It doesn’t take you an arm and a leg to make this and you are just an hour plus away from gratification. Well…maybe not that instant but, to me, it’s close enough.
Just begin by making yourself a cuppa coffee, sip as you go along with this recipe. Better yet if you can find a few pairs of extra hands to measure out the ingredients or to whisk some eggs. Be rest assured that in no time a chocolate and orange perfume will overtake your kitchen and home. There and then, you will know that gratification is just moments away.
Once you take a little bite of this chocolate orange goodness, you will know that the (little) wait is worth it!
(P.S This recipe is great for your gluten-intolerant friends. Though personally I don’t have any friends who are gluten-intolerant. I believe that no one should be deprived of sweets and desserts.)
Happy baking and till the next time,
Makes an 8-inch cake
200g dark chocolate, chopped into cubes ( I used 70% dark chocolate)
150g unsalted butter, chopped into cubes
1 tbsp grated orange zest
5 eggs, separated
165g caster sugar
155g almond meal
a pinch of salt
Dutch-processed cocoa powder, for dusting
1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees celcius. Grease and line a 8 inch cake tin.
2. Place chocolate, butter, orange zest in a bain marie and stir until the chocolate and butter has melted and the mixture is smooth. Set aside to cool to room temperature.
3. Beat egg yolks and sugar on high speed until pale, thick and creamy. Then transfer the egg yolk mixture into a large bowl. Fold in the cooled chocolate mixture, almond meal and salt.
4. Beat egg whites on maximum speed until soft peaks.
5. Add in ¼ of the egg whites into the above mixture and stir to combine and lighten the mixture before pouring the rest of the egg whites. Fold the remaining egg whites into the mixture. Fold gently to prevent deflating the whites too much.
6. Pour the batter into the tin and bake for 50 minutes or until skewer comes out clean.
7. Cool in the pan for 5 minutes before inverting the cake onto a wire rack to cool completely.
8. Dust the cake with cocoa powder and decorate with candied orange peel. Serve it slightly warm or refrigerated. Perfect for a girly tea party.
Flourless chocolate cake tips:
* Remember not to overbeat the eggwhites. Soft peak stage: When you lift your whisk, the peaks should droop slightly.
* To prevent the top of the cake from cracking while baking: Cover it with an aluminum foil 30 minutes into the baking time.