flourless chocolate cake

I used to work at a beautiful boutique winery and restaurant on Waiheke, called The Shed. At the time, the little kitchen was run by Peter Becker, and this is the chocolate cake we would serve.

Late at night, after too much Te Motu cabernet/merlot, my bestie Jess and I would sneak into the kitchen and eat this cake with Kapiti Vanilla bean ice cream and fresh berry coulis. It was heaven. Using good quality chocolate is key, the cake is only as good as the chocolate that makes it. Think Valrhona or Callebaut.

I whipped mascarpone and fresh cream together to make an especially thick, creamy topping but it is just as good served with vanilla ice cream. Fresh raspberries or berry coulis is a must, the tart berries are the perfect companion.

Flourless Chocolate Cake:

preheat oven to 160 degrees celsius

225g butter, cubed

455g very good quality dark chocolate, coarsely chopped

1/4 cup espresso coffee

8 eggs

1/4 cup sugar

1 tsp vanilla extract

pinch of flakey salt (I like the way you occasionally get a little burst of salt when you use flakey salt)

To serve:


250 g mascarpone

150ml heavy cream

Whip cream and mascarpone together till thick and silky.
Grease a 9-inch springform pan and line bottom with a parchment round. Baking this cake in a water bath keeps it moist and fudgey, to prepare the water bath cover pan underneath and along sides with foil and set in a roasting pan. Bring a medium saucepan of water to boil.

Combine the chocolate, butter, and coffee in a metal bowl set over simmering water or in the top of a double boiler. Melt the mixture, stirring constantly, until smooth and creamy, about 5 minute; set aside

Meanwhile combine eggs, sugar, vanilla in a large bowl and beat with an electric mixer (or by hand if you’re like me and don’t have a single electric kitchen utensil in your tiny kitchen) until frothy and almost doubled in volume, about 5 to 10 minutes. Fold 1/3 of egg mixture into chocolate mixture using a rubber spatula. Repeat this process 2 more times – until all of egg mixture has been folded into chocolate mixture, folding in the salt at the same time.

Pour batter into spring-form pan and place in the roasting pan. Pour enough boiling water into the roasting pan to come about halfway up the sides. Bake until cake has risen slightly and edges are just beginning to set, about 40 to 45 minutes. Remove cake from roasting pan and cool on wire rack for 4 hours.

If you can wait to eat it, refrigerate over night but hey, I’m not judging you.