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Desserts

Rich chocolate-almond cake

Rich chocolate-almond cake
Luis Sinco / Los Angeles Times

I am not a cook. I am, in fact, the only person I know who's as passionate about food as I am who doesn't cook. Oh, I can broil a piece of meat or fish or chicken and -- like ... Read more

Total time: 1 hour | Serves 4 to 6
  • 2 1/2 ounces bittersweet chocolate
  • 5 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 3/4 cup ground almonds
  • 2 whole eggs
  • 6 egg yolks
  • 3/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon sugar, divided
  • 1/3 cup cocoa powder
  • 4 egg whites
  • Dash salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Unsweetened cocoa powder, for dusting, optional

Step 1Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour an 8-inch round cake pan.

Step 2Melt the chocolate in the top of a double boiler set over, but not touching, simmering water. Add the butter and stir. When the mixture is thoroughly melted, add the ground almonds, pouring in a thin stream. Stir to blend. Remove from the heat and set aside.

Step 3Place the eggs and yolks in a mixing bowl with 3/4 cup of the sugar and the cocoa powder. Whisk until blended, then stir into the almond-chocolate mixture. Set aside.

Step 4Place the egg whites in the bowl of an electric mixer. Add the salt and beat until they hold stiff peaks, about 4 minutes. Add the remaining 1 tablespoon sugar and the vanilla and beat to combine. Gently fold the beaten whites into the chocolate mixture.

Step 5Transfer the batter to the pan. Bake until the tip of a knife inserted in the center comes out clean, 25 to 28 minutes.

Step 6Prepare a large plate with a clean dish towel on top. Remove the cake from the oven and unmold onto the towel-covered plate. Let cool. Transfer to a serving platter and dust with cocoa, if desired.

Note: From "La Maison du Chocolat" by Robert Linxe with Michele Carles (Rizzoli). For the chocolate, use the best you can find; at least half of it should be 70% cocoa. Use blanched almonds, then grind them in a food processor.

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