Chocolate Intensity

Chocintense2

After our ambitious foray into laminated dough last January, we girls decided to take it easy for this month’s cross-post. There were a couple of wonderful ideas tossed around for our next bake-go-round but clearly since this is the month of February ,the month of love and chocolate, the vote went to something intensely chocolatey.

            Chocolate Intensity ,aka “Death by Chocolate”, from Tish boyle’s The Cake book delivered exactly that punch. The subtle coffee flavor and the nuances of vanilla complemented the whole dessert, because just when you think you’ve reached your threshold of chocolatiness, the other elements blend in to bring you another dimension to its taste.

             I have also received positive remarks from my tasters who know people living gluten-free lives and they have already requested the recipe from me. This was extremely easy to make, too easy that I neglected to butter the parchment paper but the cake was very forgiving and it peeled right off.

Truffle Cake

8 oz (227g) Scharffen Berger or Valrhona 62% cocoa bittersweet chocolate, finely                  chopped

            1 ½ cups (3 stikcs/12 oz/340g) unsalted butter, cut into tbs

            1 cup (7 oz/200g) granulated sugar

            ½ cup (120 ml) brewed coffee

            6 large eggs

            1 tsp vanilla extract

            1/8 tsp salt

Bittersweet Chocoalate glaze

            6 oz (170g) bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped

            2/3 cup (160 ml) heavy cream

            1 tsp vanilla extract

Make the Cake

Position a rack in the center of the oven and preheat the oven to 350 °F. Grease the bottom and sides of a 9-inch round cake pan. Line the bottom of the pan with a round of parchment paper and butter the pan.

Place the chopped chocolate in a large bowl and set aside.

Place the butter, sugar and coffee in a medium saucepan and cook over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until the butter is melted and the mixture begins to boil. Immediately pour the hot mixture over the chopped chocolate. Let stand for 1 minute, then gently whisk until the chocolate is completely melted and the mixture is smooth.

In a medium bowl, whisk the eggs vigorously until the yolks and whites are completely blended. Whisk in the vanilla extract and salt. Whisk the egg mixture into the chocolate mixture until blended.

Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Place the pan in a roasting pan or large baking pan. Put in the oven and pour enough hot water into the pan to come halfway up the sides of the cake pan. Bake the cake in the water bath for 35 to 45 minutes, until the center is shiny but set (it should jiggle slightly). Transfer the cake pan to a wire rack and let the cake cool for 20 minutes.

Run a thin-bladed paring knife around the edge of the pan to loosen the cake. Place a cardboard cake round on top of the pan and invert the cake onto it. Remove the pan and carefully peel off the parchment paper. Refrigerate the cake for at least 2 hours before glazing.

Make the Glaze

Place the chocolate in the bowl of a food processor and process just until finely ground.( Leave the chocolate in the processor)

In a small saucepan, bring the cream to a boil. Remove from the heat and add the chocolate            to the pan. Stir until the chocolate is complete melted and the glaze is smooth. Stir in the vanilla extract. Transfer the glaze to a small bowl. Cover the surface of the glaze with a piece of plastic wrap and let cool for 10 minutes before using.

Glaze the Cake

                        Place the chilled cake, still on the cake round, on a wire rack, set over a baking sheet. Slowly pour the hot glaze onto the center of the cake. Using a small metal offset spatula, smooth the glaze over the top and sides of the cake, letting the excess glaze drip onto the baking sheet.

                        Scrape the extra glaze from the baking sheet and put it into a small sealable plastic bag. Seal the bag and cut a tiny hole in one of the bottom corners. Gently squeeze the bag over the top of the cake, drizzling the glaze in a zigzag pattern. Refrigerate the cake for at least 1 hour before serving.            

Chocintense1

Cooking Notes:

            Let me see. This is a quick crowd pleaser and takes no time at all to prepare except the refrigeration time that is needed before glazing. I do admit that this is my first time to glaze a cake and have no clue what I am doing, hence the haphazard smattering of frosting. Anyway, I’ll put that next in my test kitchen to-do : how to glaze a cake properly!

            I think we’re still deciding a name for our baking group. In the meantime visit my collaborators’ gorgeous interpretations of this cake here :

          Ivonne of Cream Puffs in Venice

          Lisa of La Mia Cucina

          Peabody of Culinary Concoctions by Peabody

          Helene of Tartelette

          Brilynn of Jumbo Empanadas

          Jenny of All Things Edible

          Mary of AlpineBerry

          Tanna of My Kitchen in Half Cups

          Hester of Hester in Geneva

            

24 thoughts on “Chocolate Intensity

  1. This. Looks. Amazing. And as an aside, everyone seems to be in the mood for chocolate these days–it's showing up on blogs left and right. In fact, I just posted a wonderful [almost] flourless chocolate cake my wife makes–also easy and crowd pleasing.

  2. I think I am going to die of chocolate overload just looking at all these intrepations of the same recipe, looks gorgeous and so yummy!

  3. I was amazed at how simple and easy this cake was to make too. Low effort, big response from the crowd. Now that's my kind of dessert. I think your glaze looks great.

  4. Veron,
    You girls will take over the world any time now! lol

    This cake is scrumptious, I'll certainly make it next time I have people over for dinner – gotta spread some calories around. 😉

  5. Terry B. – I like the looks of your 'almost flourless' chocolate cake too. It looked very decadent.
    Laurie- no such thing as chocolate overload 🙂
    Thanks Linda. I'm glad the pictures turned out pretty good too!
    Lisa – Hey sista ! well I have to figure I have to improve on something. But glaze is very forgiving.
    Mary – yeh I was amaze at the ease this cake was made..I thought I messed up on something…
    Me too Brilynn, can't wait for next months baking assignment!
    Thanks Peabody!
    Thanks Patricia – I'm sure your guests will be begging for the recipe to this one.
    Thanks Ivonne!
    Thanks Gilly!
    T.W. you have no idea. rolling in chocolate is an accurate description! 🙂
    Ari – do not resist the craving…it is futile!
    Susan ,I assure you this cake was one of the easiest to make, you don't need a mixer or anything like that.
    MeltingWok – I was dubious about the coffee in the chocolate at first because I did not want it turning mocha on me. but the coffee added a totally different dimension to the chocolate.
    Thanks Elle..it definitely makes you want to just dig in to it!

  6. I took a couple of baking classes from Alice Medrich many years ago when she owned Cocolat. Her tips:

    If parchment sticks, even when it's buttered, brush with a wet pastry brush and it will release instantly. I sometimes just wet my hands and pat it.

    To glaze the cake, don't use a small icing spatula. I bought one 10 inches long just for glazing. One swipe with the long spatula leaves you with a smoooooth top. The excess runs down the side and again one swoop around to neaten that up. You can break up the stuff in the cookie sheet to snack on once it cools and hardens (or chill to make sure it does).

    Hope this was helpful to someone.

  7. My glazing needs so much work on ! I love this cake – the ingredients, the looks..I wish I could taste it too.Oh well, I guess I will have to make it. May I ask about this baking group – is it a closed group or open to new joiners? I would be interested.

  8. Thanks for the tips shaz! I am so jealous that you took lessons from Alice Medrich. Bittersweet is my all-time favorite chocolate book!
    Hi Kristen – the other name of the cake afterall is "Death by Chocolate"
    Hi Valentina – I emailed you the relevant info. 🙂

  9. Flourless chocolate cake is really a crowd pleaser, and by the look of your's I am sure there was a very pleased crowd somewhere near you! 🙂 I adore these rich and dusky cakes…mmmmmm! What a fun cooking group you have! 🙂

  10. Here's how to make delicious chocolate covered strawberries. First of all ensure that the strawberries you are intending to use are dry, then allow them to be room temperature warm prior to making them. After the strawberries have been covered in chocolate, put them in your refrigerator to cool, but do not store them in the fridge. Consume within 1-2 days.

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