Going gluten free can be tough. Making and eating this flour-less chocolate cake is not.
In fact, going gluten free has become so much easier due to the increasing awareness of and education about gluten intolerance and Celiac’s disease. Now pretty much any grocery store you go to sells gluten free cakes, cookies, breads, and flours.
Though for some people eating gluten free is not a choice, going “gluten free” has become somewhat of a trend for others, as people assume it is automatically healthier. While it certainly can be if you cut out processed and refined flours and excess sweets, there are still plenty of unhealthy gluten free foods out there, including the aforementioned cakes, cookies, etc. Moral of the story: If you plan on going strictly gluten free, make sure you do your research. You will find gluten lurking in many unusual and surprising places (meatloaf! soy sauce! chicken soup!) and if you want to be strict about it you have to ask lots of questions.
Why am I talking about gluten free diets? Well because I am entering week four of eating gluten free as a test to see if it improves my chronic acid reflux (so far it’s just okay). I have found through online research that for some people it relieves their reflux symptoms and so I figured it was worth a try.
Anyway… back to this cake.
Whether you eat gluten or not, you likely love a good flour-less chocolate cake. I mean c’mon. It’s rich, fudgey, chocolatey, and if you fall for the trap that gluten free automatically means healthy, than this cake is totally healthy! I mean dark chocolate alone – hello! Nevermind the butter, sugar, and whole eggs…
To start, melt your chocolate nice and slowly. I prefer the double boiler method.
And then carefully combine all ingredients – tempering the warm chocolate into the cooler egg yolks…
And gradually folding in your whipped egg whites – folding being the key word to keep you from deflating them. I give my dad credit for teaching me awesome egg white folding skills (and clothing folding too).
And then you throw that beauty into the oven and let it quietly bake. Make sure not to over bake it to keep it moist. Cool it, top it with whipped cream, and dive right in.
And don’t forget to do the dishes.
Chocolate Cloud Cake
from Nigella Bites
9 oz. bittersweet chocolate, 70% cacao recommended, chopped*
1/2 cup butter, cut into cubes
6 eggs – 2 whole, 4 separated
1/2 + 1 T. granulated sugar, divided
1 T. cognac, vanilla, or other flavoring of choice (optional)
1-2 cups whipped cream (store bought or hand whipped)
cocoa powder (garnish)
Melt the chocolate in a double boiler over barely simmering water, stirring constantly and removing from the heat when the chocolate is melted. Add the cubes of butter and allow to melt into the chocolate.
In a large bowl beat the 2 whole eggs and 4 egg yolks with 1/3 cup of sugar until paler yellow and lighter.
In a separate bowl beat the egg whites until frothy. Continue to beat while gradually adding the remaining sugar until the egg whites hold their shape, but are not too stiff.
Temper the chocolate by gradually pouring a little into the egg yolks while mixing, to keep from scrambling the eggs. Add the rest of the chocolate mixture once the eggs have incorporated some. Finally carefully fold in the egg whites, one third of the whites at a time. Pour the mixture into a buttered 9-inch springform pan and bake at 350 until the center is no longer wobbly (Nigella says 35-40 minutes but when I made my 2/3 batch pie pan version it was done in less than 20).
The cake should sink slightly as it cools. When ready to serve fill the indent with whipped cream and sprinkle with cocoa powder for garnish.
* I used chocolate chips, but feel free to use a bar of good chocolate and just chop it finely and evenly so it melts well.