Almond Chocolate Cake Recipe (Moelleux au Chocolat)
Almond chocolate cake is a decadent chocolate dessert. The moist cake is made with blanched, ground almonds, semi-sweet chocolate and very little flour.
It's my best friend Alexia's favorite dessert. I remember one time visiting her in Düsseldorf, Germany, while she was finishing her masters. She picked me up at the train station and I surprised her with a still-warm almond cake. No joke, she finished the whole cake before we got back to her apartment; that's how scrumptious this cake is! Now that I'm back in Paris for the holidays, I can't wait to bake her favorite cake for her again. We haven't seen each other in almost two and a half years and she's getting married soon. While she's eating it again, I might try to embarrass her by re-telling the story to her fiancé. Am I not a wonderful friend?
Yields: 6 servings4 eggs
2/3 cup granulated sugar
1-½ teaspoons mocha paste
1 cup almond flour (see tips)
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
5 ounces semi-sweet chocolate chips, chopped
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour (optional if you want to go gluten-free)
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon canola oil (or any neutral oil)
Preheat the oven to 375°F.
Separate the eggs.
In a mixing bowl, beat the egg yolks with ¼ cup of sugar until you get a pale yellow foam; the texture of the egg yolk will be thicker. Add the mocha extract.
Make a "double boiler" (a pot filled with hot water, covered with a piece of cloth) and place a stainless steel bowl filled with semi-sweet chocolate chips on top. Make sure the bowl circumference is larger than the pot, so there isn't any splatter of water in the chocolate. Slowly melt, stirring frequently. Turn off the heat and add the butter. Stir well until the mixture is uniform.
Combine the egg yolk mixture, melted chocolate, the almond flour and flour.
In another bowl, add salt to the egg whites and whisk for about 2 minutes at low speed. Add ½ cup of sugar, increase the speed of your mixer and keep beating for another 2-3 minutes until it forms soft peaks. Don't over-beat or the texture will become grainy.
Using a silicone spatula, mix 1/3 of the whipped egg whites into the chocolate mixture to soften it. Add the rest of the whipped egg whites and gently fold them in to get an airy batter.
Apply a thin layer of oil to a non-stick cake pan, previously lined with parchment paper. Pour the cake batter; even it out using a spreader or spatula. Bake for 5 minutes at 375°F; lower the temperature to 350°F and bake for about 30 minutes until the top is crackly.
Allow to cool for 10 minutes.
Serve warm or at room temperature. Dust with a little powdered sugar (using a fine mesh strainer).
Little reminder on how to obtain almond flour: Place the almonds in a saucepan. Cover with water and bring to a boil for about 3 minutes. Drain and remove the skin. Coarsely chop them. Grind the almonds with a food processor or spice grinder (I use the VitaMix Dry Blade Container). Make sure you stop before it turns into almond butter. The result should be a fine white mill. You could also buy it directly (you can find almond flour at Trader Joe's).December 28, 2010.