A Technical Vacation & Flourless Chocolate Cake

As of tomorrow I am technically on vacation. Even though I will miss waking up at the crack of dawn to blog before the rest of my day I’m looking forward to doing as little as possible back in NYC, with a few days in upstate New York and a few more in the Hamptons. All ideal places for sipping cocktails, catching the breeze and hanging with family and old friends. Of course knowing me I will probably post stuff along the way since traveling with family and good friends and good food is pretty much my favorite thing in the world. Plus, I will be seeing my old friend Gina who always has amazing recipes to share. She’s the one who taught me how to make flourless chocolate cake. The Hotel de Crillon recipe which I swear is so easy but sounds hard and makes you look like a kitchen goddess. The recipe is below if you feel inspired…

Hotel de Crillon Flourless Chocolate Cake
Incredible, rich and elegant. Must be made one day ahead.

8 oz. Bittersweet chocolate. (Best quality. I use Valrohna which comes in 8.75 oz bars but works perfectly.)
2 sticks sweet butter
1 cup granulated sugar
4 extra large eggs
Unsweetened cocoa powder (to dust pan and sifted over top after cake is cooled.)
About one oz. bitter or semi sweet chocolate to make decorative shavings (optional)

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Butter a 9 inch round cake pan. Line bottom with parchment or even brown paper. Butter again and dust with cocoa.

Chop chocolate and butter. Melt as you prefer- over double boiler and hot water or in microwave (watching and stirring every 30-45 seconds.).
When all melted add sugar and stir. You will still see grains of sugar. That’s okay.

Whisk in eggs one at a time. Pour into prepared pan. Place in bain marie ( a larger pan with about 1 inch of hot water.) Carefully place in preheated oven. Bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes. Remove pan from water bath (I use long metal spatula) and let cool for a few hours. Run knife around pan to loosen. Turn pan out onto serving plate. It will most probably be necessary to bang the pan and the plate several times, firmly. The cake will finally come out of the pan. Do not remove the paper lining yet and don’t worry if the sides look a bit ragged. You can smooth them with a spatula. The cake will be about one inch high and the inside will still be quite soft. Cover with saran wrap and refrigerate overnight. Let stand at room temp for at least one hour prior to serving.
You can serve with soft whipped cream or espresso cream

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