Gooey Chocolate Cake

Method

Cake-eating is a most pleasurable indulgence, and the addictive qualities of chocolate make eating chocolate cake the most indulgent experience of all. The secret of a dark and gooey chocolate cake is that it should contain plenty of plain chocolate and little, if any, flour, but at the same time it should not be heavy. This is just such a cake.

Preheat the oven to 180°C, 350°F, Gas Mark 4. Have ready two 20 cm (8 in) greased deep sandwich tins, each lined with a disc of greased greaseproof paper or baking parchment.

After baking, leave the cakes in their tins to cool completely, then loosen the edges with a knife and turn out, removing the baking parchment. Sandwich the 2 cakes together with whipped cream or fromage frais and top with more cream or fromage frais and chocolate curls.

If you want to make this cake into a real orgy of chocolate, you can fill the middle with whipped cream or fromage frais, and then ice the whole cake with melted chocolate, into which you have stirred a little butter or cream. During the summer, fill the cake with fresh soft fruits such as raspberries, redcurrants, strawberries or peaches and whipped cream and cover with a simple sprinkling of icing sugar.

  1. Break up 250 g (8 oz) plain chocolate, put into a heatproof bowl set over a pan of barely simmering water and stir until the chocolate melts. Remove the bowl from the heat to cool slightly.

  2. Put the yolks of 5 large eggs (size 1) into a large bowl, with 175 g (6 oz) soft, dark brown sugar and beat thoroughly with a wooden spoon or electric mixer until smooth and thick.

  3. Pour in the melted chocolate and beat thoroughly, then beat in 2 tablespoons hot water. Sift together 1 rounded tablespoon cocoa powder and 25 g (1 oz) plain flour and stir into the chocolate mixture. In another bowl, beat the egg whites with ½ teaspoon salt until they stand in soft peaks but are not too stiff.

  4. Fold the egg whites gently but thoroughly into the chocolate mixture. Pour the cake mixture into the prepared cake tins and bake for 15—20 minutes until the cakes spring back when lightly pressed with a fingertip. Cool completely in the tin, then loosen the edges with a palette knife and turn out on to a serving plate.

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