Thursday, September 22, 2011

Birthday Cake


Well well well. Looks like we’ve found ourselves back at a pretty awesome period of time. Myy birthday time.

Yes. I do like my birthday. Yes, I do act like a little kid and start yelling out that it’s going to be my birthday a month in advance (my roommates can vouch). Yes. I do bake my own birthday cake.

Who says someone else has to bake the cake?? In case you hadn’t noticed, I kinda like to bake. Get over it!!

This cake was special for several reasons. Let me list them off

  • It’s my birthday, meaning it achieves automatic special status
  • It had TWELVE, read it, a whole dozen eggs
  • NO flour. None! what? Crazy!! I know!
  • No butter either!


No really, this was a cake, and it wasn’t a diet cake. Do diet cakes even exist? Believe me, there was enough chocolate in this sucker that made up for the lack of butter. What is the point of a diet cake anyways? I am so confused now.

Nope, all twelve egg yolks are mixed with sugar and TONS of delicious melted chocolate. All TWELEVE (it’s crazy really) egg whites are beaten until they begin to take over your house like Strega Nona’s magic pasta pot did when Anthony forgot the magic words to stop it. Great book, check it out.

Some how, these things combine together to make the lightest chocolate you’ve ever eaten. So light, that the original recipe titled it “lighter than air chocolate cake”. I find that hard to believe. Air is pretty light. This comes pretty darn close.

The frosting? Alcoholic whipped cream. No, not like that stuff that started popping up in liquor stores. REAL whipped cream, with real(?) alcohol.

Of course it was fantastic, especially shared among wonderful friends who took time to come celebrate!

On another note – no flour means Passover friendly! I know you’re all excited now!

Let’s get this party started.

Warning- this cake was kinda a pain in the butt. GREASE WELL and you may have a prettier cake than mine.

Cake Ingredients:
12 oz fine-quality bittersweet chocolate (not unsweetened), chopped
6 tablespoons water
12 large eggs, separated, at room temperature
1 1/3 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons Dutch-process unsweetened cocoa powder

NOTE! I ended up using 3 cups heavy cream because I didn’t have enough to make good layers. Either be stingy with your frosting or get more cream!

2 cups heavy cream
6 tablespoons confectioners sugar, sifted
4 tablespoons Grand Marnier*

To make the cake preheat the oven to 350, and GREASEEEEE, line, and grease again 4 cake pans (I used two and changed them out)

Melt chocolate with water on the stove over low heat, stirring frequently to prevent burning. Turn off and let cool to luke warm.

Beat egg yolk 2/3 cup sugar, and salt in a large bowl with a beater until thick and pale (8 minutes with hand mixer). Fold in chocolate.


Beat egg whites in a very large bowl with a clean beater until whites hold soft peaks. Slowly mix in remaining 2/3 cup sugar and beat until stiff peaks (really, beat well). Fold in thirds the whites into the chocolate mixture. Fold gently but thoroughly .

Spread batter in four baking pans and bake until puffed and dry to the touch (anywhere from 15-20 minutes). Cakes will sink a bit in the middle (so sad!).

remove cakes from pans CAREFULLY, and freeze layers for roughly an hour.

To make frosting: Beat cream with sugar and Grand Marnier until whipped cream holds stiff peaks.

Alternate layers of frosting and cake until stacked pretty! (unlike mine). Refrigerate for at least an hour to ensure defrosted cake layers.


I have to apologize. Not only did my cake turn out ugggly (grease your pans!!!), I took really bad pictures of it.

What can I say, a drink in hand and a good conversation can be quite distracting.

Happy baking (and birthday to me )