A soft and moist chocolate cake layer topped with raspberries and a fluffy chocolate mousse. This cake is a chocoholic’s dream of rich and intense flavors.
I’m the birthday girl, so I made myself the cake of my dreams! My birthday is on Sunday to be exact, and I will be celebrating by doing a little retreat in Grandpa’s cabin by the Mississippi river, a tiny wooden cabin. It was my dream: nothing fancy, just the bare minimum, a couple of great books, a fire pit, and surrounded by nature. I also secretly hope the wifi will not be working so I can disconnect from the modern world for a couple of days.
And of course, there will be cake! No matter how old I am, there will always be cake for my birthday as far as I’m concerned, a chocolate cake as much as possible. This is the tiny girl in me asking, and this little one will never ever grow up when it comes to this part. Chocolate cake is mandatory. On top of being the perfect Birthday Cake, this one is also a wonderful Valentine’s Day cake, a rich decadent chocolate cake to share with your loved one, your best friends, or anyone you love in your life. This is the true cake of love.
Let me describe it to you: a super soft and moist chocolate cake layer topped with a rich, dense and creamy chocolate mousse. In between? A generous layer of homemade raspberry jam. Need more chocolate? Sift unsweetened cocoa powder all over, or top with a chocolate ganache, using this ganache recipe.
The chocolate cake base is flourless, made out of almond flour, unsweetened cocoa powder, vegetable oil and sour cream. The absence of butter and melted chocolate makes the cake much lighter, soft and moist in texture even after it is placed in the fridge for cooling. Also, this cake base is ridiculously easy to prepare and could be enjoyed as a gluten-free version of a classic chocolate cake if you wanted to.
For the raspberry filling, I went my own way, thawing frozen raspberries (as they are not in season at the moment) in a saucepan with sugar and chia seeds. Chia will help the mixture to thicken and create this jelly effect we are looking for. It’s super simple, you cannot fail. However, if you run out of time, you can always use raspberry jam instead.
The final layer is a decadent, rich and intense chocolate mousse. Make sure you use high quality, bittersweet chocolate to get best results, especially if like me you’re a chocoholic. I recommend 70% dark chocolate if you can, but 60-65% would be fine too. For this recipe, I make double cream, by whipping together mascarpone cheese and heavy cream until soft peaks. If you live in UK however, you might find some double cream ready to use. If so, I recommend you use the quantity of 5 ounces (150 ml).
And voilà! This rich and indulgent cake calls for celebration and will make a stunning centerpiece at your next dinner party. A chocolate overload deluxe to fix your sweet tooth.
- ¾ cup (90g) ground almonds
- 4 Tablespoons (30g) cocoa powder
- 4 Tablespoons (30g) all-purpose flour
- 1 pinch salt
- 2 eggs
- ½ cup (100g) granulated sugar
- ⅓ cup (80 ml) vegetable oil
- ⅓ cup (80 ml) sour cream
- 3 cups (375g) raspberries
- 3 Tablespoons maple syrup or honey
- 3 Tablespoons chia seeds
- 4 eggs, separated
- 2.5 ounces (70g) mascarpone
- 3 ounces (85g) heavy cream
- 10 ounces (300g) dark bittersweet chocolate
- 2 Tablespoons (30g) caster sugar
- Pre-heat oven to 350°F (180°C) and grease a 8-inch spring form. Line the bottom with parchment. Grease the parchment too.
- Mix ground almonds, cocoa, flour and salt in a small bowl. In a separate bigger bowl, whisk eggs, sugar, oil and sour cream.
- Add the dry mixture into the wet one and stir till just combined.
- Bake for 20-25 minutes and allow cool in the pan before turning out on the rack. When completely cooled, line the same loaf pan with cling film, covering the bottom and the edges of the pan. Place the cake back in the pan and leave to rest in the refrigerator for about 1 hour.
- Heat berries in a saucepan over medium-high heat until mashed.
- Add chia seeds and maple syrup/honey, stirring occasionally, until liquid has reduced and mixture has thickened. Transfer to a container and chill in the refrigerator until cool.
- Melt the chocolate in the microwave, stirring every 10 seconds, until just smooth. Set aside.
- Whisk the egg yolks and pour in the melted chocolate, whisking continuously.
- Prepare the double cream by combining the mascarpone and heavy cream together. Whisk with an electric hand mixer until soft peaks form. Fold the egg-chocolate mixture into the softly whipped cream.
- In a separate bowl, beat the egg whites with an electric hand mixer until the whites start foaming. While still whisking the eggs, start adding the sugar, a teaspoon at a time, until the whites form stiff glossy peaks.
- Quickly stir in one third of the meringue to the chocolate mixture. Add the rest of the meringue in and fold gently.
- Pour this mousse on top of the cake and smooth out the top. Place in the refrigerator for 2 hours. Remove from the refrigerator about 15-20 minutes before serving.
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