Chocolate Nemesis

seves 8-10

1 cup (8 ounces) unsalted butter, plus additional for greasing pan

12 ounces fine-quality semisweet chocolate, coarsely chopped

5 extra large eggs

1 cup granulated sugar

7 Tablespoons water

1/2 teaspoon espresso powder

Pinch of kosher salt

1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Place oven rack in middle position and preheat the oven to 300º F. Butter a 9-inch round cake pan and line the bottom with a round of parchment, then butter parchment.

In a large glass or metal bowl set over a pan of simmering water, melt the chocolate and butter, stirring occasionally until just smooth, remove from the heat.

In a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat the eggs and 1/3 cup of the sugar until tripled in volume and thick enough to form a ribbon that takes 2 seconds to dissolve when the beater is lifted, about 5 minutes.

Heat the remaining 2/3 cup sugar, water, espresso powder, and salt in a small saucepan over medium-low heat, stirring until the sugar is dissolved, about 2 minutes.  Pour the hot syrup into melted chocolate, stirring to combine.  Stir in the vanilla and allow to cool for 10 minutes.

With the mixer on medium speed add the chocolate syrup, a little at a time, to the egg mixture and continue to beat until just incorporated.  Pour the mixture into the prepared pan.

Place cake pan into a roasting pan lined with a kitchen towel, then add enough boiling water to reach about three-quarters up the side of the cake pan.  Bake until just set, about 50-60 minutes.

Cool cake completely in water bath before unmolding, at least 2 hours.  Run a sharp knife around the the inside edge of the cake pan to loosen if necessary, then invert a flat serving platter over pan and flip cake onto the platter; carefully peel off parchment.  Cake can be made 6 hours ahead and kept in pan, covered, at room temperature.  Serve with lightly sweetened whipped cream or lightly sweetened whipped crème fraîche.  Enjoy!

Printed from