We've borrowed a classic flourless chocolate cake recipe from a true
baking artist, Alice Medrich, and applied a Southwest variation using Hatch green chiles. We suggest Chambord as the liqueur, and the raspberry topping, which works so well with chocolate. Think of some other creative uses for roasted green chiles during the Hatch green chile season in late August.
Flourless Chocolate Cake with Raspberries and Hatch Green Chiles
If you like a really dark chocolate cake, mix 100 percent unsweetened chocolate with 70-80 percent chocolate. If you’re using a liqueur, think of one that brings out the best in chocolate, such as frangelico for a hazelnut flavor, kirschwasser for cherry, Chambord for raspberry or Grand Marniér for orange.
8 eggs, cold
1 pound bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
16 tablespoons (2 sticks) unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch chunks
1/2 cup strong coffee or liqueur (optional)
1/4 cup roasted, peeled Hatch (anaheim) chiles, trimmed of seeds and diced (use hot or mild, your choice)
Sauces and toppings:
1 package (10 to 12 ounces) frozen raspberries, thawed, or 8 to 10 ounces fresh raspberries
Granulated sugar, to taste
Powdered sugar, for decoration (optional)
1 cup heavy cream
1 teaspoon vanilla
Position a rack in the lower third of the oven. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.
To make the cake, line the bottom of an 8-inch or 9-inch springform pan with parchment paper and grease the sides. Set the pan on a wide sheet of heavy-duty foil and wrap the foil up the sides without tearing it. Set the pan in a larger baking pan or a roasting pan. Bring a kettle of water to a boil.
Preferably using a hand-held mixer, beat the eggs at high speed until the volume of the eggs doubles to about 1 quart, 5 minutes. If you have to use a heavy-duty mixer, use the whisk attachment and speed 6 and beat to the same volume, which will take about the same amount of time. Melt the chocolate and butter, with coffee or liqueur, if using it, in a large heatproof bowl either set in a pan of barely simmering water.
Gently fold one third of the egg foam into the chocolate mixture with a large rubber spatula until just a few streaks of egg are still visible. Fold in half of the remaining foam in the same way. Fold in the diced chiles. Fold the remaining foam into the batter until completely incorporated.
Scrape the batter into the prepared springform pan and smooth the surface. Set the roasting pan on the oven rack and pour enough boiling water into the pan to come about halfway up the side of the springform. Bake until the center has risen slightly, the edges are just beginning to set, a thin glazed crust (like a brownie) has formed on the surface, and an instant-read thermometer inserted halfway into the center of the cake registers 140 degrees, 22 to 25 minutes. Remove the springform from the water bath and set on a wire rack. Cool to room temperature. Cover and refrigerate overnight to mellow. Cake can be kept covered and refrigerated up to 4 days.
To make the sauce, if using frozen raspberries, drain them and reserve the juice. Place fresh or drained frozen berries in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse briefly but not until perfectly smooth. Press the purée through a strainer to remove the seeds. Add some of the reserved juice if desired. If the purée seems too tart, sweeten it to taste. Cover and refrigerate until serving.
About 30 minutes before serving, remove the springform pan sides, invert the cake onto a sheet of waxed paper and peel off the parchment liner and turn the cake right side up onto a serving platter. (Do this quickly.)
To serve, sieve the cake lightly with powdered sugar if desired. Whip the cream with the vanilla and 2 teaspoons of sugar or more to taste until nearly stiff. Serve slim slices on a pool of raspberry sauce with a dollop of whipped cream on top.
Adapted from Alice Medrich's classic Flourless Chocolate Cake, from “A Year in Chocolate” by Alice Medrich