It was Mothering Sunday here in the UK yesterday, which meant all the family gathered together to enjoy some family time and Mum appreciation. We spent the day together including a traditional Sunday afternoon walk through nearby woodland followed by a full blown Sunday roast cooked by dad and me. Of course, no family gathering would be complete without something sweet and tasty for afternoon tea or dessert and on this occasion it turned out to be this wickedly indulgent chocolate torte.
This torte originally started out life destined to be something else, but things didn’t go according to plan (always check you have all the necessary ingredients in stock!) and I had to improvise. I’d made a chocolate ganache base that I’d flavoured with coffee to enhance the chocolatiness but then I got stuck. I decided to try and turn the ganache into a flourless chocolate cake. I separated some eggs, made the whites into meringue, folded everything together, put it in the oven and hoped for the best.
It puffed up and rose spectacularly in the oven before sinking down into a gooey fudgy chocolate cake once taken out. However, this is how most flourless chocolate cakes turn out so I wasn’t disappointed. The taste of this cake is about as far from disappointment as you could get – it’s fantastic!
We ate a taster slice a few hours after it was first baked, when it was only just cool. The texture was like a softly set mousse, very light but incredibly chocolaty. The coffee comes through later, not overpowering the chocolate, only adding to its rich dark flavour.
After the torte has rested for a few hours the top surface developed a slightly crisp, fragile crust while the underneath became sticky and fudgy, like the best sort of brownie you can imagine. Mmmm it was divine. Far better than my original plan for the ganache.
There is very little added sugar and no flour, nuts or grain of any kind, meaning the chocolate can really be the star of the show. You want to use a good quality high percentage dark chocolate to really get that coco hit.
Small slice are all that’s needed for an instant chocolate high and a mood enhancing boost.
Flourless Chocolate Mocha Mud Torte
250g dark chocolate 65-70% cocoa solids
300ml double cream
3 tsp instant coffee granules
1 tbsp milk
30g golden syrup
50g caster sugar
Cocoa powder for dusting
Line an 8inch deep springform tin with a sheet of silicone paper. Preheat the oven to 180C.
Heat the milk and coffee granules together in the microwave until the coffee has dissolved. Break the chocolate into small chunks and place into a saucepan along with the dissolved coffee, double cream and golden syrup.
Heat gently, stirring often, until the chocolate has completely dissolved into the cream. Do not allow to boil.
Remove from the heat, and stir to make sure everything is well combined. Set aside to cool slightly.
Separate the egg yolks from the whites and place into separate bowls. Beat the egg whites until fluffy, opaque and just starting to hold a soft peak. While still whisking, add the caster sugar, a tablespoon at a time until you achieve a thick glossy meringue.
Beat the egg yolks into the melted chocolate mixture, mixing quickly.
Add a third of the meringue to the chocolate mix, and fold in use a large spoon or spatula, making sure to reach right to the bottom of the pan.
Add the rest of the meringue, and fold in gently until just combined. Don’t over mix.
Pour the chocolate batter into the prepared pan and place in the oven to bake for 40-45 minutes.
The mix will puff up and rise to the top of the tin and crack during baking. This is normal. When the top has formed a crust and is darker around the edges, remove the cake from the oven.
Allow to cool completely (it will collapse and sink – this is fine) before running a knife around the edge and removing from the pan.
Dust with cocoa powder and serve.
Serve slightly warm for a soft mousse texture, or leave to rest for a few hours to achieve more of a truffle-brownie texture.