Dark Chocolate Stout Torte (Flourless)
As I continue to climb down from post-travel To-Do List Mountain, it has come to my attention that February arrived.
Phil recently made his highly scientific prediction, meaning the pink hearts and red roses holiday is not far behind. It’s as delicious a reason as any to satisfy our chocolatiest, butteriest desires. I’m talking deep dark chocolate torte (inspired by our wedding cakes) with one special ingredient to set it apart from the rest of the flourless cake pack.
Stout. A simple yet sophisticated way to dress up the familiar. In our case, a strong and spicy double/imperial stout — the remnants of a bomber bottle we didn’t dare finish in one sitting. Guinness Extra Stout, a chocolate stout or even a smoky porter are excellent alternatives.
It’s as decadent and rich as you can imagine a torte primarily composed of butter, eggs and dark chocolate will be. Not a lick healthy, but plate-lickingly worth the splurge to celebrate our love — holiday or not. Raising a slice to you and yours on this St. Valentine’s Day! (Or save it for St. Patrick’s…)
Tell me… What’s your most indulgent treat?
- 8 ounces good-quality dark chocolate (at least 60 to 70% cacao), chopped finely with a serrated knife (or use dark chocolate chips)
- 10 Tbsp (1 1/4 sticks) unsalted butter, left in the wrapper at room temperature for at least 30 minutes, wrappers reserved for greasing the tin
- 5 large eggs, at room temperature
- 1/2 cup stout, such as Guinness Extra Stout (or try a chocolate stout, an imperial stout for a deeper, boozier kick, or porter for a smokier flavor)
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 2 Tbsp pure maple syrup
- 1/4 tsp salt
- Preheat the oven to 350° F with a rack in the middle position. Using the reserved butter wrappers, grease an 8-inch springform or round cake tin. Line the base of the tin with a piece of parchment, and butter that as well.
- Place the chopped chocolate or chocolate chips and the butter in a medium metal or heat-proof glass bowl. Set the bowl over a saucepan of barely simmering water and stir until the chocolate and butter are melted and smooth. Remove the bowl from over the water and set aside to cool briefly.
- In the meantime, whip together the eggs, sugar and maple syrup using an electric stand or hand mixer until light and fluffy, about 4 to 5 minutes. With a rubber scraper, stir the stout into the chocolate-butter mixture, and then fold in the salt and the egg mixture. The batter should be smooth and dark.
- Pour the batter into your prepared tin and place it in the center of the oven. Set the timer for 40 minutes initially and check every 2 minutes thereafter for doneness. (At 40 minutes, the center is usually still quite jiggly.) In total, the torte should bake approximately 45 minutes, or until the center is set enough that it does not jiggle when the pan moves, and the top will have formed a thin crust with a nice sheen and slight crackly appearance. (Note: A cake tester will not come out clean, so rely on the visual indicators for doneness.) Remove the torte from the oven, and let it rest in the tin on a rack for 10 minutes.
- When cool enough to handle, carefully remove it from the tin and cool completely on the rack. The torte will deflate slightly.
- Slice with a very sharp knife that has been dipped in hot water and wiped dry, or a sharp serrated bread knife. Serve in wedges at room temperature or chilled (we prefer well-chilled).
+ To make this gluten-free, look for local GF versions of stout or porter. If you can find brews from NY Steadfast Beer Co. or Portland, OR-based Ground Breaker Brewing, their respective Oatmeal Cream Stout or Dark Ale (an American-style Porter) would be wonderful here.
+ Otherwise, try swapping the beer for red wine — or Port for an ultra special treat!
Adapted from Orangette.
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