Spring is here! Not that we had much of a winter, but my cherry tomato plant has just started to blossom, so spring is officially here.
The beginning of spring is a sign that Passover is soon to come. Which in turn means all those Matzas I am definitely NOT going to eat, so I have to stock up on bread (my freezer is full). And flour! Yes, flour, what if I suddenly have an urge to bake 10 loafs of bread?! and some buns maybe? or croissants?? so I bought 4kg of flour just in case the 3kg I already have at home won't due.
Judging from last Passover, by the end of this holiday I'm still going to have 7kg of flour in my kitchen. But hey, what if, right?
But sometimes, I too like to give in to holiday spirit and bake a politicaly-correct (Passovery-correct?) cake, one that has no matza flour in it (GOD!) and is darn right delicious! If you're still not sure what to make for dessert for Leil Haseder, and even if you are, you should definitely try it! If only for the dreamy crispy meringue.
This chocolate-pecan-meringue combination is so good that a failed previous attempt to make an edible version of this cake with strawberries in the base, did not stop my husband from scraping of the meringue bit and enjoying it with a cup of coffee.
Super Fudgy Flourless Chocolate-Jam-Meringue Cakemakes one 24cm diameter cake
This recipe was adapted from Helene's wonderful blog
Ingredients for the cake:
100g unsalted butter, at room temperature*
1/2 cup firmly packed dark brown sugar
4 eggs (L), separated
160g bittersweet chocolate, melted and cooled
1 tbsp rum
1/4 tsp salt
70g almond flour**
300g apricot jam
Ingredients for the meringue:
80g bittersweet chocolate, roughly chopped
80g pecans, roughly chopped
1 tbsp cornstarch
3 egg whites (L)
1/2 cup sugar
Preheat the oven to 175 degrees Celsius. Line the bottom of a 22cm diameter springform cake pan with parchment paper.
Cake: Using the mixer's paddle attachment, beat the butter and brown sugar till soft and smooth. Add the egg yolks, one or two at a time. Finally add the melted chocolate, rum, salt and almond flour and beat until combined. Now transfer the mixture to a different bowl and clean the mixer bowl till it shines. Using the whisk attachment, whisk 4 egg whites in your shiny mixer bowl until soft peaks form. Fold the egg whites into the chocolate mixture, pour into the cake pan and bake for 35 minutes untill the top looks stable and even a bit dry.
The jam should have a consistency that makes it easy to pour it over the cake. If the jam you are using is quite thick, heat it up a bit before the cake is ready, so you can spread it easily and quickly, since the cake is to go back into the oven afterwards. I also like to liven the jam up a little bit by adding a squeeze of lemon juice.
Meringue: Combine the chopped chocolate and pecans with the cornstarch and set aside. Whisk the remaining 3 egg whites in a clean mixer bowl. When the foam begins to turn white, start to gradually add the sugar. Beat until stiff peaks form and the meringue is smooth and shiny. Fold in the chocolate-pecan mixture.
Finish: When it's time, remove the cake from the oven, pour the jam over it and smooth the surface a little. Now quickly spread the meringue over it, taking care not to over stroke it, and put back into the oven. Bake until the meringue is nice and crisp, about 25-30 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool for 10 minutes. Run a sharp knife around the edge of the pan to detach it from the cake and then remove the sides of the pan. Let it cool completely before taking a bite.
*If you are forgetful like me, you probably won't remember to take the butter out of the fridge beforehand. Instead, you can cut the butter into thin little pages and beat it in the mixer till it's soft.
**It's basically just finely ground almonds.
HAG SAMEAH EVERYONE!