Wednesday, September 07, 2005

French Chocolate Cake

Clothilde hosts Wine Blogging Wednesday today and has chosen a wine that will taste great with chocolate. Here is my recipe for a rich, decadent chocolate cake. I often serve this cake or pots de crème when I'm out to impress as the end of a five-course meal . I always preface this dessert with a green salad dressed with vinaigrette to cleanse the pallate and to prepare for the intense enjoyment of chocolate and raspberry wine.

French Chocolate Cake
8 squares (8 oz) bittersweet chocolate, chopped into small pieces
2 sticks butter, cut into small pieces
1/2 cup sugar
2 tablespoons Armagnac
4 eggs
1 tablespoon flour
Powdered Sugar and a lacy doily
Crème fraîche for serving

Preheat your oven to medium heat (350F). Grease a 9' spring form pan with butter. Line the base with waxed paper and grease the paper. Wrap the bottom of the pan with foil to keep water from seeping in.

Melt butter, chocolate and sugar together over low heat. Remove from heat and stir in the Armagnac.

Beat eggs for 50 strokes. Beat in flour, then slowly fold in the chocolate mixture. Pour into your prepared pan.

Place the springform pan into a larger pan and place it into the oven. Pour enough boiling water around the springform pan to come more than halfway up the sides. Bake about 30 minutes, or until a broom straw inserted in the middle comes out clean. Remove the cake pan and set it on a rack to cool. The center may sink or crack--it's okay.

When the cake is almost cold, turn it out and over onto a serving plate and carefully peel back the paper. The bottom is now the top, so any cracks or sinking will be disguised.

At serving time, place a doily on top and sift powdered sugar through the lace. Cut into slices and serve with crème fraîche.

Frambrosia Oregon Raspberry wine takes the category of "berry wine" to a new height. Fine wine shops and restaurants seek out this wine for its pure, concentrated depth of flavor, and its ability to match exquisitely with a wide range of desserts. As an alternative to late harvest wine, port, or sherry -- Frambrosia is a delight to anyone who enjoys the true essence of this marvelous fruit." This wine was brought by a guest one evening--he had called before coming to ask if he could bring a wine that would go with dessert--he couldn't have made a better choice.

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