I love early mornings. I love staring down the day and knowing that I have ten more hours of daylight to be productive. I love the potential. On the flipside, I hate waking up for those early mornings. Waking up is incredibly difficult, infinitely so when I haven’t had enough sleep. Such was the case on that one Sunday morning I finally decided to go see the sunrise.
At 5:45AM, I quietly opened my bedroom door and padded down the stairs and out the sliding door in the kitchen. As I made my way over to the park, I couldn’t help but notice how serene the streets were. The sunrise was gorgeous, pale pinks and blustery blues all swirled together in a vivid mosaic in the sky. As exhausted as I was, I felt calm and happy.
That evening, I received a call from my friend Daniel. He was leaving for boarding school in the US and he wanted to hang out once more before he left. The next day, Daniel came over and we proceeded to make two miniature Flourless Chocolate Cakes with Chocolate Ganache and Raspberries, one to eat and one for him to take home to his parents.
The last time I made this cake was for my piano teacher. He, of course, got the whole cake while I was stuck with the crumbs. Needless to say, I was incredibly excited to try the cake. The first bite was pure euphoria. Immediately, the sensations I had while overlooking the sunrise came rushing back. I felt tranquil, like I was chocolate-induced coma.
Really, food that tastes this good should come with a warning. Good luck at boarding school, D. I know you're going to make the most of it.
Click below for the recipe.
Flourless Chocolate Cake with Raspberries
Yield: 1 8-inch cake or 2 6-inch cakes
To see if flourless chocolate cake was boarding school kitchen-friendly, we beat all the eggs by hand. (When I say we, I really mean Daniel). And guess what? It’s totally possible to make this cake by hand, as long as you’re not afraid to roll up your sleeves and really give those arms a workout.
- 7 oz bittersweet chocolate, chopped
- 7 oz (14 tablespoons) butter, softened
- 4 eggs, separated
- ¾ cup powdered sugar
- ½ tsp vanilla
- 4 oz bittersweet chocolate, chopped
- ½ cup heavy cream
- 1 pint raspberries, washed and dried
Preheat the oven to 375°F/190°C. Line with parchment, grease, and flour two 8-inch/22 cm cake pans. We made two miniature cakes by dividing the batter into four 6-inch pans (and only baking them for 20 minutes).
Melt the chocolate over a pot of gently simmering water, then beat in the butter a piece at a time until smooth. In a separate bowl, beat the yolks with half the sugar until thick, pale, and ribbony, about 5 minutes. In another bowl, beat the whites to peaks. Scatter over the remaining sugar and beat to a stiff meringue.
Slowly whisk the chocolate mixture into the yolk mixture. Add the vanilla. Stir in a spoonful of egg white, then pour the chocolate mixture over the egg whites and gently fold together with a spatula. Be sure not to over mix or the egg whites will lose their volume. Pour the batter into the prepared pans. Bake for 20 minutes and then lower the heat to 325F. Bake for an additional 20 minutes, until a skewer inserted neat the middle comes out almost clean.
Remove from the oven. Run a knife around the outside edge, and then let the cakes cool completely. The middles will sink; it just means that there will be more space for the ganache and raspberries.
For the chocolate ganache, melt the chocolate and cream over a pot of gently simmering water. Let the mixture cool to room temperature, stirring occasionally.
To assemble, turn the cakes out of the pans. Place the first layer on the serving plate and spread ½ of the ganache over top. Scatter ½ of the raspberries. Repeat with the second layer of cake. Dust with icing sugar before serving.