French Chocolate Cake

French Chocolate Cake, and it's coincidentally gluten free | Vagabond BakingHere’s a perfect cake to slot into your repertoire, or print it out, fold it and slip it between the pages of one of your favourite recipe books, or is that just something I do?

Why, you may ask? Well, apart from the fact that this cake is gluten-free, it is also absolutely delicious. It may appear dense and heavy, in a brownie kind of way but that is not the case.

This cake is in fact quite light, rather a surprise when you take a mouthful. It makes a perfect dessert to end a meal, there is nothing stodgy and filling about this slice of chocolate heaven.

The perfection of this cake comes from its short list of ingredients, just butter, chocolate, eggs and sugar.

No flour or ground nuts to weigh the cake down, the eggs provide all the structure, while the butter, chocolate and sugar provide all the flavour.

It goes without saying that you should use  good quality chocolate here, you want an excellent chocolate taste.

I made this in our friend’s kitchen, in their great apartment in London. A treat for letting us stay with them.

French Chocolate Cake | Vagabond BakingThe sun was just setting as I took the cake out on the balcony to photograph it, we’ve timed our trip down here excellently with the fabulous weather!

A light dusting of icing sugar is all the decoration this cake needs, I served it with crème fraîche but berries would also be excellent.

Any leftover cake is just as good the next day, just store it in an air-tight container.

French Chocolate Cake | Vagabond BakingThis recipe is adapted from The World Food Cafe recipe book, I have added light muscovado sugar to give a deeper flavour.

French Chocolate Cake

Oven 190 C / gas 5 / 375 F

23 cm { 9 inch } loose-bottomed cake tin, ideally a good quality springform one, buttered

  • 225 g { 2 sticks } unsalted butter
  • 200 g { 7 ounces } good quality dark chocolate, chopped finely
  • 6  free-range eggs, separated
  • 100 g { 1/2 cup } caster sugar
  • 100 g { 1/2 cup } light muscovado sugar, or light brown sugar
  • icing sugar to dust

Place the butter into a medium saucepan and begin to melt over a low heat. Once it begins to melt, add the chopped chocolate. Continue to melt them together over a low flame, stirring regularly, until no lumps of chocolate remain. Keep the heat as low as you can and keep your eye on it. Take off the heat as soon as it becomes smooth, set aside to cool.

Combine the sugars together in a small bowl.

In a spotlessly clean non-plastic mixing bowl beat the egg whites with an electric mixer to stiff peaks. While the mixer is still running add a third of the sugar, once it has beaten in repeat until all the sugar is used. Finally beat in the egg yolks, it will become a creamy aerated batter.

Pour the melted chocolate and butter into the batter and gently but quickly fold it in with a metal spoon, try not to lose any of the volume created by the eggs.

Transfer the chocolate batter to the prepared cake tin. Bake for 50 to 55 minutes, it will have started to pull away from the sides of the pan. Check its done-ness by inserting a cake tester {in my case it was a knife}, it should come out fairly clean. The cake will have risen in the oven but will sink back down when you take it out, this is how it should look.

Leave to cool in the tin until ready to serve, a little warm is perfect. Once released from the pan, dust the cake with icing sugar.

Ideally, don’t store the cake in the fridge, this turns it fudgy, this isn’t necessarily a bad thing but it does become heavier.

French Chocolate Cake
A decadent flourless chocolate cake, gluten-free and nut-free.
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Ingredients
  1. 225 g { 2 sticks } unsalted butter
  2. 200 g { 7 ounces } good quality dark chocolate, chopped finely
  3. 6 free-range eggs, separated
  4. 100 g { 1/2 cup } caster sugar
  5. 100 g { 1/2 cup } light muscovado sugar, or light brown sugar
  6. icing sugar to dust
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 190° C / gas 5 / 375°F
  2. and prepare a 23 cm { 9 inch } loose-bottomed cake tin, ideally a good quality springform one, by buttering it.
  3. Place the butter into a medium saucepan and begin to melt over a low heat. Once it begins to melt, add the chopped chocolate. Continue to melt them together over a low flame, stirring regularly, until no lumps of chocolate remain. Keep the heat as low as you can and keep your eye on it. Take off the heat as soon as it becomes smooth, set aside to cool.
  4. Combine the sugars together in a small bowl.
  5. In a spotlessly clean non-plastic mixing bowl beat the egg whites with an electric mixer to stiff peaks. While the mixer is still running add a third of the sugar, once it has beaten in repeat until all the sugar is used.
  6. Finally beat in the egg yolks, it will become a creamy aerated batter.
  7. Pour the melted chocolate and butter into the batter and gently but quickly fold it in with a metal spoon, try not to lose any of the volume created by the eggs.
  8. Transfer the chocolate batter to the prepared cake tin. Bake for 50 to 55 minutes, it will have started to pull away from the sides of the pan. Check by inserting a cake tester, it should come out fairly clean.
  9. The cake will have risen in the oven but will sink back down when you take it out, this is how it should look.
  10. Leave to cool in the tin until ready to serve, a little warm is perfect. Once released from the pan, dust the cake with icing sugar.
Notes
  1. Ideally, don’t store the cake in the fridge, this turns it fudgy, this isn’t necessarily a bad thing but it does become heavier.
Adapted from The World Food Cafe Recipe Book
Adapted from The World Food Cafe Recipe Book
Vagabond Baker http://vagabondbaker.com/
French Chocolate Cake | Vagabond Baking

by Rachel A Davis
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18 Responses

  1. Carole says:

    Merci beaucoup!

  2. Carole says:

    Lovely work! Would you be happy to link it in to the current Food on Friday which is all about French Food? This is the link . I do hope to see you there. There are already a lot of links for you to check out. Cheers

  3. trixpin says:

    Yum.Yum. Oh, and did I mention Yum???
    Yum.

  4. There’s always space for another chocolate cake recipe in my baking repertoire – will have to give this one a go!

  5. That looks delicious. I’ve never made a cake with out flour before. Might have to try.

  6. Mm…looks heavenly! Always love a nice slice of chocolate cake. Totally agree on using good chocolate. It makes a world of difference!

    • I was fortunate when I popped out to buy the ingredients, my favourite chocolate was on offer, it was cheaper to buy them than the other stuff! Now that’s a damn fine baking coincidence 🙂

  7. Good lord that looks truly incredible. what I wouldn’t give for a slice of that alongside my imminent coffee!

  8. LOVING THIS CAKE!!! It looks like the perfect decadent dessert to whip up for a dinner party. I can’t wait to give this a try. I think the idea of serving this with some cream and berries would be absolutely delicious.

    • It would make an excellent dessert for a dinner party, you could make it earlier in the day and serve it at room temperature (don’t chill it, it turns fudgy). Have fun making it, and eating it of course 😉

  9. thanks for the recipe. I never thought you could make cake with out flour. it looks so rich and delicious. I love you photos!

  1. June 6, 2013

    […] French Chocolate Cake. […]

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