Flourless chocolate cake is a wonderful addition to the battery of basic recipes any pastry chef should have. It is extremely versatile and is simple to prepare. Best of all, it is superb for those who can’t have wheat.
by volume by weight
2 cups chopped bittersweet 350 grams chopped
bittersweet chocolate bittersweet chocolate
12 tablespoons butter 168 grams butter
1 teaspoon salt 4 grams salt
4 large eggs 272 grams eggs
4 large egg yolks 72 grams egg yolks
1½ cups sugar 297 grams sugar
Heat the oven to 300F. Melt the butter and the chocolate together until smooth.
Whisk the sugar, salt, eggs, and egg yolks together until thoroughly combined.
Whisk the melted chocolate into the egg mixture until well mixed.
For a 9″ cake, butter the bottom and sides of the pan and line the bottom of the pan with parchment. Fill the pan completely. It will rise only slightly! Bake for approximately 1 hour and 15 minutes. The cake should be just set in the middle and will still look a bit wet. Cool the cake completely and refrigerate until solid before unmolding.
For individual cakes, line the bottoms of individual pans with parchment as for a large cake or, if you use entremetier rings like I do, wrap the bottoms with foil.
Fill the rings almost to the top and bake for 12 to 15 minutes.
Cool completely and refrigerate until solid. The cakes will souffle up a bit during baking but will quickly settle when they hit the cool air.
Gently peel off the foil and run a small offset spatula around the edge of the rings to loosen the cakes.
There are many ways to finish flourless chocolate cakes. They can be used as part of a plated dessert, covered in ganache and used as a special occasion cake, or simply dusted with powdered sugar or cocoa and served with fresh berries or ice cream. They can be served warm or cold and are excellent both ways. Served cold, the cake has a more fudge like texture and a room temperature or warm cake will be much softer and gooey.
Although I recommend mastering the recipe before changing it, flourless chocolate cakes take well to many alterations. Different spirits such as rum, cognac, or brandy add a festive touch as do hazelnut, raspberry or orange liqueurs.