Flourless Chocolate Heart Cake
Well, given that Valentine’s Day is upon us, I thought I had better post my “surest way to his or her heart,” Flourless Chocolate Heart Cake recipe to save you! You can make this a day ahead (although I haven’t left you the time for that haha) or you can make it the day of. I find it amazing how it turns out with few of the “normal” cake ingredients. It is rich and delicious and not terribly finicky.
Plus, you get serious bonus points for cutting it into individual heart shapes……. I also think it is a good idea to place four dessert plates into the fridge so you have chilled plates to plate your cake on.
I think one of the keys is to use a high quality dark chocolate and for that I choose Bernard Callebaut. I start by putting my oven on to 425 F to preheat. I will then grab my 11 by 17 jelly roll pan (or if you don’t have one, grab a couple of normal cookie sheets or jelly roll pans). Line the pans with parchment paper. I leave about three inches of parchment hanging off of the ends of the baking sheets.
Next, I mix together the chocolate chopped into small pieces and the butter either in a double boiler or in a microwave safe bowl to melt. If you use the double boiler, put a cup or so of water into the bottom pot and bring to a boil. Then add the upper pot with the chocolate and the butter and stir regularly until it is melted.
If using the microwave, microwave it for about a minute on high and then stir. Then repeat microwaving for 30 seconds at a time until the chocolate is soft and mixes with the butter. Do not, and I repeat DO NOT overheat the chocolate or it will seize and you will say bad words and start the process over. It is better to do multiple short blasts in the microwave and minimize your risk.
Cool your chocolate/butter mixture down.
Then I separate the eggs — whites into a large mixing bowl and yolks into a small bowl. Using a hand mixer on medium or so, beat the egg whites until they are nice and foamy. Then slowly add the sugar. Nice and slow, see, that is how you do it…. Continue beating the mixture until you have added all of the sugar and you have peaks. We aren’t looking for meringue here or peaks like the Alps, just nice medium peaks that just hold their shape.
We haven’t forgotten about your egg yolks! Grab them and mix them lightly before adding them into the cooled chocolate mixture. Then we take some of the egg white mixture and mix it into the chocolate mixture. Then we take the chocolate mixture and fold it into the egg white mixture. Fold means don’t mix the crap out of it! You have worked very hard to this point, trying to make everything nice and light and airy. Overmixing at this stage will undo all of your hard work. Lightly mix with a wooden spoon until just combined.
Spread it as evenly as you can in your jelly roll sheets and bake it in the oven for about ten minutes. If you are using the two smaller trays, it will be a shorter baking time like around 7 minutes or so. What you are looking for is the cake looking set. It may puff up in some places and will still seem wet under the top surface. Remove it from the oven and then grab the edges of the parchment to remove the cake from the hot jelly roll pan and place it on a rack to cool completely. You can expedite this stage by placing it in the refridgerator if you aren’t worried about warming up your fridge. Or, if you live in a climate like mine, you can put it it in your “outdoor” fridge.
The Truffle Filling
While it is chilling, heat some whipping cream over medium high heat in a small pot until it is hot through but not boiling. Take it off the heat and add more chopped chocolate! Let the chocolate melt in the hot cream and then mix it together and add a little Grand Marnier. Chill it completely. It can even stay in the fridge overnight at this stage. The key is that it is completely chilled. Don’t rush it…..
Once it is completely chilled, beat it with a hand mixer on medium in a mixing bowl until it just begins to thicken. Don’t overmix with the electric hand mixer or it will get get grainy and icky. It is best to finish whipping it by hand until it is thick and can be spread. I know, I know, who mixes by hand…. Just think of the love……
Mix together raspberry jam with some Grand Marnier until it is a consistency that can be drizzled over top of the cake.
Creating the Final Product
Take a long knife and run it between the cake and the parchment paper so you can easily separate them without losing half the cake. Place the cake on a nice big work surface and using a 3 1/2 inch heart-shaped cutter, cut 12 heart shapes out of the cake. Clean up any edges.
Take the nicest 4 hearts and set them aside for your tops. Take four of the remaining hearts and place on the work surface. Place a nice thick layer of truffle filling on the heart and then add another heart. Then another layer of truffle and finally, finish with one of the nice hearts you set aside. Complete the other three layered cakes the same way. You might ask why we are making four cakes for something that traditionally might be a dinner for two. It is called redundancy….. You will thank me when one of your layered cakes gets knocked over by your cat.
Remove your chilled dessert plates from the fridge and drizzle generously with a nice dark chocolate sauce. Using a pie lifter or something similar, place the layered cake on top of the chocolate drizzle and finish with the Jam Drizzle and some whipped cream.
Sit back and wait for the love.
Flourless Chocolate Heart Cake
Delicious, rich and sure to win a heart!
- 2 cups chocolate high quality dark, chopped
- 6 tbsp butter
- 9 egg whites large
- 1/2 cup granulated white sugar
- 4 egg yolks large
- 1 cup whipping cream
- 3/4 cup chocolate high quality dark, chopped
- 1 1/2 tbsp Grand Marnier liqueur
- 2 tbsp raspberry jam
- 1 tbsp Grand Marnier liqueur to taste and consistency
Preheat oven to 425 F and place four dessert plates in the fridge.
Line a 11x17 jelly roll pan with enough parchment paper that about three inches hangs off each end.
Put first amount of chopped chocolate and butter in a small microwave safe bowl. Microwave on high for one minute and then stir. Continue microwaving on high for 30 seconds at a time until the chocolate can be mixed with the butter. Set aside and let cool.
Separate the egg whites and yolks placing the egg whites in a large mixing bowl and 4 of the egg yolks into a small bowl. Mix the egg whites on medium speed until foamy. Then, slowly add the sugar, beating until the egg whites form peaks which just hold their shape.
Mix up the egg yolks gently and then mix them into the cooled chocolate mixture. Then take some of the egg white mixture and add it to the chocolate mixture to lighten it up.
Finally, fold the chocolate mixture into the egg white mixture and once combined, spread it evenly on the jelly roll pan.
Bake for about 10 minutes or until the cake looks set. It will still seem wet under the top crust. Chill completely.
While the cake is chilling, heat the whipping cream in a small pot on the stove top until hot but not boiling.
Remove the cream from the heat and add the second portion of chocolate to melt. Mix until it is smooth and then add the liqueur. Chill in fridge until completely cold. It will take AT LEAST an hour and can be left overnight at this stage.
Remove chocolate mixture from the fridge once completely chilled and mix in a medium mixing bowl until it just begins to thicken. Finish by beating by hand until it is thick and a spreadable consistency.
Remove cake from chiller and place on a work surface. Run a long knife between the parchment paper and the cake to release the cake. Using 3 1/2 inch heart-shaped cutters, cut 12 hearts out of the cake. Clean up the edges so they are smooth.
Mix together the raspberry jam and liqueur so you have a nice consistency for drizzling.
Gently remove the hearts from the parchment without breaking them. Set aside the four best hearts for the top of the layered cake.
Take four hearts and spread a generous layer of truffle filling over the first heart. Then add the next heart layer and repeat with the truffle filling. Finally, take the four best hearts you set aside and top your cake.
Remove your chilled dessert plates from the fridge and drizzle with a nice dark chocolate sauce. Place a chocolate cake stack on each plate and drizzle with the jam drizzle, finishing with whipping cream if desired.