Depending on the type of chocolate you use, sometimes the top gets all crackly and shiny, like a really good brownie—I find that using semisweet chocolate chips reliably gives me that look (like the photo below) whereas dark chocolate bars give me the look of the version pictured at the top of the post. Both are delicious!
It’s also relatively foolproof in my experience, and can withstand just about any variation you throw at it. Sometimes I use all dark chocolate, sometimes I use semisweet and dark. I’ve varied the brand of chocolate I use. I’ve tried European-style butter and regular old grocery store butter. I sometimes add a little flour, and sometimes I don’t. I’ve tested it with a little gluten-free flour, and that works fine, too. I’ve baked it in numerous ovens in numerous kitchens. I’ve made it in 9” pans and 8” pans and once, as mini brownie-style cakes.
Recipe by Posie Brien – Adapted from Molly Wizenberg
Ingredients & Instructions
7 ounces (200 grams) dark chocolate, La Boîte tip, try subbing spiced chocolate chips for a fun flavor
7 ounces (200 grams) unsalted butter
1 1/3 cup (250 grams) granulated sugar
5 large eggs
1/2 teaspoon vanilla (optional, I like the flavor)
pinch of salt
1/2 teaspoon espresso powder (optional, for enhanced chocolate flavor) La Boîte tip, or try any of the following: Urfa, Coffee Flour, Apollonia
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Line an 8” or 9” pan (a springform is ideal) with parchment and grease the parchment and sides of the pan well.
In a large heatproof bowl over a double boiler (or you can do this in the microwave), melt the chocolate with the butter until smooth.
Add the sugar, salt, and espresso powder (if using), and stir well, then set it aside to cool just slightly. Continue whisking after a few minutes; it’s okay if it’s gritty-looking, it’ll smooth out as you go.
Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well between each addition. Add the vanilla (if using) and continue mixing until the batter is smooth and shiny.
Pour it into your prepared pan and bake for about 25 minutes—note that depending on your pan size and oven, I find that the bake time can vary pretty dramatically with this cake. I recommend starting to check at 20 minutes but knowing that it could take considerably longer than 25 minutes. You’ll know it’s done with the cake looks mostly set on the top but just slightly jiggles still in the center.
Remove from the oven, run a knife around the edges to loosen it, and let it cool for at least 20 minutes.
Serve it warm or cold. It’s excellent the next day, and even better I think if you freeze it.