Flourless Hazelnut Chocolate Cake

At first, the concept of a flourless cake seems ridiculous. How can you have a cake that’s got no flour in it? It took me a long time to grasp the idea and understand what it was all about (though to be honest, I’d never been all that bothered). It turns out it’s pretty much a sponge cake that has nut meal in place of regular flour. I felt I’d been lied to when I first found out. Where’s the magical unicorn dust?!

This recipe is the ultimate flourless chocolate cake! Fairly easy to make and goes down a treat. It’s almost like mud cake, but far less sickly. I recommend making your own hazelnut meal by first toasting your hazelnuts and grinding them up finely. If you can be bothered, run your meal over a fine sieve to remove any chunky bits, unless of course, for some strange reason, you like your cake bitsy.

You can replace caster sugar with brown sugar. However, you may lose the wonderful crispy top crust.


FLOURLESS HAZELNUT CHOCOLATE CAKE
Recipe from Taste.com.au
Cooking time: 1 hour

200g dark chocolate, chopped
150g butter
6 medium eggs, separated
1 1/2 cups toasted hazelnut, ground into fine meal
3/4 cup caster sugar
1/4 tsp cream of tartar

1. Preheat oven to 170°C/150°C fan-forced. Grease a 6cm-deep, 20cm (base) round cake pan. Line base and side with baking paper.
2. Combine chocolate and butter in a small saucepan over low heat. Stir until melted. Set aside to cool slightly.
3. Place egg yolks and sugar in a bowl. Beat until thick and creamy (ie. ribbon stage). Add chocolate mixture. Beat to combine. Add hazelnut meal. Beat to combine again.
4. In a very clean bowl, beat egg whites a little until bubbly. Add cream of tartar (which will help stablise the egg white meringue). Continue beating until stiff peaks form. Using a spatula, gently fold egg white through chocolate mixture in three additions.
5. Pour mixture into prepared pan. Bake for 1 hour or until a skewer inserted into the centre has moist crumbs clinging. Stand in pan for 10 minutes. Turn out onto a wire rack to cool. Garnish with ganache icing.

GANACHE ICING (OPTIONAL)
300g dark chocolate, chopped
3/4 cup cream

1. Place chocolate and cream in a saucepan over low heat. Cook, stirring constantly, for 3 to 4 minutes or until smooth.
2. Spread over top and side of cake. Stand for 10 minutes or until icing has set.

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