My chipotle in adobo sauce obsession has met chocolate. And cake. And even without the chipotle I do think this flourless chocolate cake is pretty fantastic, chocolaty rich but not overly sweet. The chillies just add a gentle zing to the cake. The non chilli eaters who tried the cake did not find it overpowering at all but it is very much an optional ingredient – the cake is perfect without it.
What I did like about using the actual chillies rather than a powder is that you have varying degrees of chilli coming through as you eat it whereas adding a chipotle powder will give it a level chilli flavour right through.
The cake is at its best the next day so plan ahead and let is stand overnight. Serve it piled high with strawberries which is the perfect accompaniment.
- 200g 70% dark chocolate
- 5 eggs, separated
- 200g butter at room temperature
- 200g sugar
- 200g ground almonds
- 2 tablespoons cocoa powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 2 large chipotle chillies, seeds removed and finely chopped
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoons very strong coffee/espresso
- Preheat the oven to 170 degrees C. Grease a 22cm spring-form pan and line the base with baking paper.
- Set a metal bowl over a saucepan of boiling water, making sure the bowl does not touch the water. Break the chocolate into small pieces and stir until it melts. Remove from the boiling water and let it cool.
- Beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the egg yolks one by one to the butter mixture beating the mixture well after each addition. Add the melted chocolate and mix well.Â Mix the almonds, cocoa and salt and add to the chocolate mixture mixing until combined. Add the chilies, vanilla extract and coffee to the chocolate mixture and mix until just combined.
- Beat the egg whites until stiff and fold into the chocolate mixture with a metal spoon.
- Pour into the prepared cake tin and bake for about 45 minutes until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out a little wet (not gooey). Let the cake cool and once completely cool remove from the pan.Â Place in an airtight container and let it stand overnight. Serve with piles of fresh strawberries.
Wine suggestion from Conrad Louw: Contrary to popular belief, chocolate desserts and cakes are fairly difficult to pair with wine. If there is a strong fruit component to the cake or dessert, a Noble Late Harvest or Muscadel will work wonders. There is also a bit of a fashion fad to pair a good Cabernet or Shiraz with chocolate, but that is often more a case of trying to fit Cinderella’s shoe onto a horse. As this cake offers the great tastes of rich chocolate with almonds as well as the gentle heat of chipotle, fortified wines will work well. Depending on your preference, Full Cream Sherry or Port, in particular Cape Tawny, will work well. Personally I will opt to pour a glass of De Krans Cape Tawny, cut a generous slice of the cake, and let tomorrow be the worries of another time. And if it is enjoyed as a midnight feast (why not), try a good aged Potstill brandy.