My mom, my dad, and I are on detox. After the holidays, it felt a bit necessary, but my dad is having a much harder time of things than my mom and me; still the chocolate chip cookies my mom made today were calling my name. We were in the grocery store yesterday, shopping for fruits and vegetables, of course, when my dad spotted a large slice of dark chocolate cake sitting alone in the bakery case.
He looked at the cake, looked at me, looked back at the cake, and nodded to me, smiling. I reminded him of his detox, but he seemed undeterred. Since then, he has eaten toffee, bagels, and salmon, so I assumed he was through ridding himself of toxins. I wanted to make him a little treat to take back with him and wanted to satisfy his chocolate cake craving, so I set out to make this fudgy, flourless cake.
All I can say is that this cake confirmed the fact that my dad and detox are not friends. He wandered downstairs, after having consumed a slice that I placed in the fridge, and declared the cake to be "the best cake ever". I know he will be glad to have this up in Chapel Hill, and I hope it brightens up a few lonely dinners at home with the dogs.
Adapted from Room for Dessert
2 teaspoons cocoa
12 ounces bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
3/4 cup heavy cream
3 tablespoons Cognac
6 eggs, at room temperature
6 tablespoons sugar
Powdered sugar for dusting
Preheat oven to 350. Butter a 9 1/2-inch springfrom pan, place a circle of parchment on the bottom, and butter parchment. Dust pan with cocoa. Melt chocolate, heavy cream, and Cognac in a bowl set over simmering water, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat. Using the whisk attachment on an electric mixer, beat eggs and sugar for about 5 minutes, until they form a well-defined ribbon. Fold one third of the beaten egg mixture into chocolate mixture to lighten it. Fold in the rest. Transfer batter to prepared pan. Set cake pan inside of a deep ovenproof pan, and add hot water until it reaches halfway up the side of the pan. Bake for 45 minutes, or until cake feels just set in the center. Remove from oven, let cool slightly, remove from water bath, then cool completely. Run a knife around the edges and release from springform pan. Dust with powdered sugar.