Gluten-free birthday celebration: No-bake, flourless chocolate cake

Yeah. I’ll admit it: that looks like one sorry cake. However, what cannot be captured in mere photographic reproductions is the overpowering richness of this flourless chocolate cake (which is really more like a giant circle of ganache). Though I was initially disappointed that the cake wasn’t as thick as the one in the original recipe, in the end, that turned out to be a good thing. Just a tiny sliver of this knock-out cake was more than enough to satisfy my chocolate craving; any more would have been too much.

I chose a flourless chocolate cake for this birthday celebration because the birthday girl is gluten-free, and I wanted to bake a cake that normally would not need any gluten, instead of trying to make a xanthum flour substitute. The result was pretty delicious, mostly, I think, due to the addition of cinnamon and cayenne to round out the taste of the chocolate. And the portion size was perfect for a party of eight. Overall, this is a great, easy-to-bake (you really only need two ingredients), impressive cake that is sure to delight both gluten-free birthday girls and their glutenivorous party guests.

Ingredients:

-Parchment paper

-8 oz 70% chocolate

-8 oz heavy cream

-Cinnamon

-Cayenne

-Salt

-Cocoa powder (for dusting)

Step 1: Line the bottom of a loaf pan or springform pan with parchment paper. Remember: the smaller the pan, the thicker the slice (which isn’t necessarily a good thing).

Step 2: In a double boiler, melt chocolate over medium-low heat, stirring constantly to keep it from sticking to the bottom of the pot.

Step 3: In a saucepan, heat cream until warm. Add cinnamon, cayenne, and salt.

Step 4: Remove chocolate and cream from heat. Slowly, and in small batches, pour cream into chocolate. Stir well, until there are no lumps and the mixture is fully incorporated. Then stir a little more, just for good measure, because this stuff has a tendency to separate when you put it in the fridge to chill.

Step 5: Pour batter into prepared pan, cover with saran wrap, and refrigerate for at least an hour, or overnight.

Step 6: Lick the pot clean. I mean, this cake is just melted chocolate mixed with cream. Don’t even pretend you can resist it.

Step 7: After cake has chilled, dust with cocoa powder and serve. Don’t let it sit out or it will get melty — only take it out of the fridge when you’re ready to serve it immediately.

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