Le Gâteau au Chocolat (The Chocolate Cake)

Given the choice, I’ll pick a French chocolate cake over an American one any day. Most people would choose a huge fluffy piece of cake with tons of frosting but I much prefer a smaller, denser piece that’s jam packed with flavor. This recipe comes from famous French chef Jean-Geeorges Vongerichten and is so simple and delicious that there is no reason to not make it! What I love about this cake is that by substituting in finely ground almonds(which also makes it incredibly moist), it is almost flourless! This cake packs so much flavor that you’ll be surprised to see there’s only 7 ingredients in it! 

The picture above is all the ingredients that go into the cake and while you can buy almond flour in any store, it’s expensive and really easy to make yourself. To get the 1/2 cup used in this recipe, I just put 1 cup of whole unsalted almonds in a small food processor and pulse until really finely ground. Put that through a fine mesh sieve and you’ve got your own almond flour! 

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees and butter and flour an 8-inch round fluted tart pan with a removable bottom.

Separate the yolks and the whites of 3 large eggs. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, whisk together the 3 egg whites and 1 tsp granulated sugar until medium-stiff peaks form. Melt 3 1/2 oz. chopped bittersweet chocolate and 4 tbsp unsalted butter in a heatproof bowl set over (but not touching) a pot of simmering water, stirring occasionally until smooth and then remove from heat. Add one yolk to the chocolate mixture and beat with a whisk to combine. Add the remaining yolks and mix. Add in 1/2 cup confectioner’s sugar, 1/2 cup almond flour and 1 tbsp all-purpose flour… mix to combine. Add 1/3 of the egg whites to this chocolate mixture and mix to loosen the chocolate mixture then gently fold in the rest of the egg whites with a spatula. Transfer the batter to your prepared tart pan.

chocolate cake

Bake until a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean, about 17 minutes. 

The cake will come out of the over pretty puffed, it will fall back down almost immediately and start to pull away from the sides… don’t panic, this is what you want! Cool in the pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes and then remove from pan and cool completely. Cut into six even slices and dust with cocoa powder. I love the use of the tart pan because once cut into slices, the fluted edge of the cake ends up looking really beautiful.

You can serve the cake just like this, or you can add a few pieces of fruit on top (I used blackberries, grapes and strawberries).