It is in France that I really started paying attention to food and its ingredients; I had always enjoyed cooking prior to my stint 'en France' but the French culinary culture just opened my eyes in a whole new way. Let me put it this way, I was 'squinting' at food in the past, this stay opened my eyes to their full aperture and make food and cooking a hobby.
One of the many recipes I was taught by Jacqueline, the stern and strict but ultimately wonderful housekeeper was a French chocolate cake. The cake, made purely of chocolate, butter and sugar, with only a tablespoon of flour (or almond meal for a gluten free option) is rich, moist and best enjoyed in small portions.
I love making this cake, every time I do it takes me back to that kitchen in Nantes, speaking pidgin French to Jacqueline (who was always immaculately dressed and made up, even when scrubbing the bathroom) and a lot of happy memories. Funnily enough my ipod always seems to be playing 'la vie en rose' when I'm baking this cake, which must help bring back those memories.
It is really simple to make, so dear reader I decided to share this recipe with you today!
Molleaux au Chocolat
150g good quality, 70% dark chocolate
150g demi-sel (lightly salted) good quality butter
150g icing sugar
1 tablespoon flour (or almond meal for gluten free)
1. Preheat oven to 150 degrees celcius
2. Break up chocolate and cut butter into cubes and place in a bowl over a saucepan of simmering water (or bain-marie) and melt, occasionally stirring, until smooth and completely melted
|The chocolate and butter in the bain-marie|
3. In a mixing bowl, beat eggs, one by one, until mixture is light and fluffy
4. Pour about half a cup of the chocolate mixture to the eggs and mix through (to prevent scrambling the eggs), then mix in the remainder of the chocolate mixture
5. Add icing sugar and flour/almond meal and mix through until fully combined and the batter is dark and glossy
|The pic's a bit blurry but trust me, this is glossy and dark!|
6. Once all ingredients are fully mixed, pour into the prepared cake pan and place in oven
7. Cook in oven for 40 minutes, checking to make sure it doesn't burn. Don't worry if the top cracks, I think every single one of these I've made the top has cracked.
8. Slice into pieces and serve; it is really nice if you serve it with raspberries and double cream, or even on its own!
Enjoy! So tell me, what is your favourite type of chocolate cake?