Thursday, October 8, 2009

Food: The Perfect Chocolate Cake

As you've probably learned from my postings, I'm not typically a baker. This is mainly due to the fact that I prefer savory over sweet -and- with only two people in the house it's not really wise for me to make desserts very often - 3 dozen cookies, 2 people, one weekend? You do the math :)

Although I typically reserve the baking responsiblity for my mother or sister, I do like to make desserts for special occassions. As a result, I decided for Jonathan's birthday this year to try Molly's famous chocolate cake. Being prone to experimentation, I did modify the recipe slightly, using a chocolate bar infused with chili to add an extra special touch and a little spice/heat. Also, I didn't trust my cake pan in terms of sticking-risk, so I lined the entire pan instead of just the bottom with parchment (not particularly pretty but it worked).

We had slivers of the cake served at room temperature after dinner to celebrate and then I froze the rest. Since then we have shared some thawed cake slices with a house guest and have a few slivers left in the freezer, reserved for another special day. It holds up perfectly when frozen! And I've decided this wonderful, rich treat may become a birthday staple.

"Molly's Winning Hearts and Minds Chocolate Cake"
Adapted from Orangette

  • 2, 3.5 oz Dark Chocolate Bars with Chili (MM: Such as "Lindt Excellence" Chili or Vosges Red Fire)
  • 7 oz Plugra (MM: European-style butter)
  • 1 c granulated sugar
  • 5 large eggs
  • 1 T whole-wheat pastry flour


Preheat oven to 375 degrees and grease an 8-inch round cake pan. Line the base of the pan with parchment. You will probably want to grease the parchment too.

Finely chop the chocolate (a serated bread knife is a great tool to use for this) and melt it gently with the butter in a double boiler, stirring regularly to combine (Note: You should not try to do this in the microwave due to a high risk of burning the chocolate). Add sugar to the chocolate-butter mixture, stirring well and set aside to cool for a few minutes. Finally, add the eggs one by one stirring well after each addition. When the mixture is a gorgeous, silky brown, add the flour.

Pour the lovely batter into your cake pan and bake for around 25 minutes (Depending on your oven's true temperature this may vary - mine took 30-35 minuites). The top of the cake should be cracked and the middle just slightly jiggly (if at all). Allow the cake to cool before slicing. And don't panic - the cake will deflate some after cooling...this won't change the fact that it will taste fabulous.

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