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Bete Noire Chocolate Cake

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“The translation is literally “black beast” but idiomatically, means “nemesis”. This is from Lora Brody, Growing up on the Chocolate Diet, and she confesses that this took hundreds of tries to perfect. This is so easy and is the equivalent of the famous “Chocolate Decadence”. It can be eaten almost before cooling and can be kept for a week. It is incredibly intense and rich. Serve alone, with sauce or with glaze (Ganache), recipe included.”

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees with the rack in the center of the oven.
  2. Butter a 9” cake pan (not a springform) and place a circle of parchment or wax paper on the bottom, covering it completely. Butter the paper.
  3. Chop both the chocolates into fine pieces and set them aside.
  4. Combine the water with 1 cup of the sugar in a heavy 1 1/2 quart saucepan. Bring to a rapid boil over high heat and cook about 2 minutes.
  5. Remove the saucepan from the heat and immediately add the chocolate pieces, stirring until they are completely melted. Then add the butter, piece by piece, stirring to melt it completely.
  6. Place the eggs and the remaining 1/3 cup sugar in either the bowl of an electric mixer or a regular mixing bowl. For a cake with a crunchy crust: beat the eggs and sugar in the electric mixer until they have tripled in volume. For a smooth top (better for frosting): mix the eggs and sugar only until the sugar dissolves.
  7. Add the chocolate/butter mixture to the eggs and mix to incorporate completely. DO NOT OVERBEAT! — this causes nasty air bubbles.
  8. Spoon and scrape the mixture into the prepared pan.
  9. Set the pan into a slightly larger pan or a sturdy jelly—roll pan.
  10. Set both in the oven and pour hot water into the larger pan.
  11. Bake for 25—30 minutes.
  12. Let cool in the pan for 10 minutes and then run a sharp knife around the sides to release the cake. Cover with plastic wrap and unmold onto a cookie sheet. Invert a serving plate over the cake and flip it over, so the plate is on the bottom and the cake on top. (Ed. Note: I cook longer as I don’t trust the consistency. It’s very “soft”).
  13. Ganache:.
  14. Scald the cream.
  15. Add the chocolate off the heat, and stir very gently until smooth.
  16. Cool slightly and pour over cake.

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