Friday, August 3, 2007

Chocolate Brandy Cake

This is a dense, rich and moist cake - nearly a meal in itself.

Ingredients: Cake
2/3 cup finely ground pecans
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 tsp. salt
12 plump, moist prunes, cut into bits
1/4 cup water + 3 Tbs water
1/4 cup brandy (or Armagnac, cognac, or whisky)
7 ounces bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
8 Tbs (1 stick) unsalted butter, cut into 4 pieces
3 large eggs, separated
2/3 cup sugar

Ingredients: Glaze
4 ounces bittersweet chocolate
1 Tbs vegetable oil

1. Center a rack in the oven, and preheat to 375F.

2. Butter a springform pan, and fit the bottom with parchment paper, then butter the paper. Dust the inside of the springofm with flour, and tap out the excess. Put the pan on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.

3. Whisk together the nuts, flour and salt.

2. Put the prunes and 1/4 cup of water in a saucepan over medium heat and cook, being careful not to burn the prunes until the water almost evaporates.

3. Take the pan from the heat, and add the brandy. Set the brandy aflame. When the flames die out transfer the fruit and any liquid to a bowl and let it cool down.

4. Combine the chocolate, butter and the remaining 3Tbs of water in a bowl and microwave until the chocolate is just melted and not very hot - you don't want the butter and chocolate to separate.

5. In a large bowl whisk the egg yolks and sugar together until thick and pale, about 2 min.

6. Switch to a rubber spatula and, one by one, stir in the chocolate and butter mixture, the nut mixture, and the prunes with any liquid. Fold in the flour.

7. In a separate bowl whisk the egg whites until firm, glossy peaks form.

8. Stir about 1/4 of the eggs whites into the batter, and then fold in the rest.

9. Pour into the springform.

10. Bake for 28-38 min, until it is puffed, firm on top and starting to come away from the sides of the pan. A thin knife should come out streaky, but not wet.

11. Take the cake and place on a rack to cool for 10 min. Carefully remove the sides of the pan, pull off the bottom of the pan, and let the cake cool down on the rack.

12. Melt the chocolate for the glaze with the oil (in the microwave will do) and then pour on top of the cake. Smooth with a knife.

Taken from Baking: From My Home To Yours, Dorie Greenspan, pp.279-81


Cookie said...

Dear Rhid, I'm meditating upon making this cake in the nearest future. I live in Luxembourg and I have a problem to find the pecan nuts in the local supermarkets... I haven't given up yet but I'd like to ask you ... in case I don't find the pecan nuts do you think I could replace them with the walnuts? Thanks.

rhid said...

Walnuts should work well, I'd roast them though to get rid of the slightly acidic flavor, but I think they'd work wonderfully!

Cookie said...

Thank you! I'll inform you about the results :)

Zapjelly said...

O wow, this is EXACTLY what I'm craving for right now. Will make soon. Thanks for the recipe!