This is probably my favorite dessert of all time. As a kid, I remember going to “Harry’s in a Hurry” and getting a chocolate torte for special occasions–including birthdays. It was amazing. It was smooth but still so dense, like chocolate cement that hadn’t quite set. The texture wasn’t quite as fluffy as a mousse pie, but you still needed to use your fork with effort. And of course it was made with dark chocolate–milk chocolate is way too sweet for human consumption.
So, when the lust dinner came about, I immediately knew what dessert was going to be. No brainer. I did a dry-run about two months prior, and while the taste was fantastic I was NOT happy with the texture. This second time around, I was happier with the texture, but I still have not found that magical combination.
In reading recipes, I was shocked at the great differences in similar-sized tortes. Most recipes I found called for approximately the same number of eggs; however, the disparities came in with the chocolate and butter. I found two recipes (one from a well-respected cooking magazine, and one from a well-respected chef) that reading back to back made me guffaw. Both called for six separated eggs, both called for vanilla extract and the same amount of sugar; however, one called for a pound of chocolate and a stick of butter, and the other one called for half a pound of chocolate and two sticks of butter. That seems a bit ridiculous. Oh, well…maybe somewhere in the middle everyone can be happy.
Notes before the recipe:
- This is a flour-less dessert, so it’s perfect for the gluten intolerant.
- You should ALWAYS use high quality chocolate. Having said that, this dessert can become really expensive really quickly.
- You want to be very careful melting chocolate. There is nothing worse than burned chocolate. Ideally, use a double boiler. Otherwise, use a good stove-top sauce pot. NEVER use a microwave.
- 14-16 ounces high-quality dark chocolate (I used Ghirardelli’s).
- 1 stick butter, plus some melted for coating
- 1/3-1/2 cup sugar
- Vanilla extract
- Cocoa Powder
- 6 eggs, separated
- Take a springform pan and coat it lightly in melted butter and cocoa powder. Set aside.
- Separate six eggs. The yolks need to be in a large bowl.
- Take your stick of butter and your chocolate and melt it over your stove top. Stir constantly and remove from heat the second everything has melted.
- Place the melted chocolate mixture in the bowl with the eggs. Add 1/4-1/3 cup of sugar and some vanilla extract to the bowl. Fold all ingredients.
- Add 1/4 cup sugar to the bowl with the egg whites. Beat until the egg whites are somewhat stiff.
- Fold the egg whites into the egg-yolk mixture.
- Pour into the springform pan and bake in a preheated 350*F oven for 30-40 minutes, or until the torte passes the “toothpick” test. Do NOT over-bake!