Chocolate Hazelnut Cake with Frangelico Cream, flourless
Preheat the oven to 180C
Serves 8 – 10
20cm cake tin
110g hazelnuts, toasted on 180C for 8 minutes, skins rubbed off
150g 70% dark chocolate
150g unsalted butter
35g cocoa powder, best Dutch, unprocessed, plus extra for dusting
80ml hot water
260g dark brown sugar
4 eggs separated
For the Frangelico cream
250 ml whipping cream
2 tbs icing sugar
1 tbs Frangelico liqueur
Butter a deep, round 20cm cake tin and line the sides and base with baking parchment. It helps to put two or three little dabs of butter on the tin itself, so that the paper stays in place.
Grind the hazelnuts, skins removed, in a food processor, so they have the consistency of almond meal, or a little coarser if you’d like a little bite to the cake’s cooked crumb.
Put the chocolate and butter in a bowl placed over simmering water, making sure the bowl makes no contact with the water.
When melted, stir gently and remove from heat.
Combine the cocoa powder and hot water in a large bowl and stir smooth.
Then add the melted chocolate and butter, the sugar, the ground hazelnuts and stir till well combined.
Add the egg yolks, one at a time and beat in with a spoon.
In a separate bowl, whisk the egg whites until they form stiff peaks.
Fold them gently into the chocolate mixture, half at a time,
Pour the mixture into the prepared cake tin and bake on 180C for 45 minutes, or till the top is crisp and friable, a little like meringue, though a skewer comes out clean.
Remove from the oven and allow to cool in the tin.
For the Frangelico cream, put the cream and icing sugar in a bowl and whisk until the cream forms soft peaks, then fold in the Frangelico.
Turn the cake out of the tin onto a cake plate and through a fine meshed sieve, sift cocoa powder over the top.
Dip a knife in very hot water, wipe it dry and use to cut the cake.