The cake sounds horrible in English, but if I put it in French...
Gateau au chocolat à la fleur de sel et huile d'olive.
The cake definitely sounds so much sexier in French, don't you think? In short, just as the title says, it is a chocolate cake with olive oil and sea salt (fleur de sel). Another recipe adaptation from the Nobody Does It Better... cookbook by Trisha Deseine. Olive oil and sea salt on a chocolate cake you say? Indeed. Trust me on this one, it is simply out of this world!
Chocolate has been daringly teamed with many unexpected flavours especially in recent years. According to the book, it was Pierre Hermé who made adding salt to chocolate popular. French chef Inaki Aizpitarte takes it one step further by adding olive oil and surprisingly, it works!
My first taste of olive oil being used in dessert no doubt was at Adriano Zumbo patisserie in the winter collection. Perhaps it was the combination of ingredients in the gateaux to be blamed, I actually did not think much of the olive oil and its role in general. One of us even described the flavour of that particular cake as "funky". However, this recipe has definitely change my opinion towards olive oil in gateaux and finding myself loving it more and more.
Inaki's philosphy towards food - as long as the flavours and technique are pure and simple and the ingredients of highest quality, anything is possible. He is absolutely right. The chocolate cake is simple, it is moist and dense like a chocolate brownie. The olive oil smoothes the palate, enhancing the depth of the bitter chocolate's aromas while the crunch of fleur de sel makes the sweetness of the cake even more profound.
This probably one the best chocolate cake recipes I've used and definitely will safe keeping it for future reference. For those who remember my domokun cake, and those who were unfortunately had to eat it would know how dry and solid it was. But this recipe is definitely a keeper. The chocolate cake is more like a chocolate brownie, moist on the inside and crusty on top. I've also alternated the recipe a little by replacing Fleur de Sel with Himalayan Pink Salt (because that's the only salt I've got in the pantry other than table salt). Himalayan pink salt supposedly to be purer than sea salt, but seriously, I don't think it matters and I definitely can't taste the different. But table salt is a no no.
So tell me readers, have you try any recipes that totally blow your socks off?
Chocolate cake with olive oil and salt Gateau au chocolate à la fleur de sel et huile d'olive
200g dark chocolate (min 70% cocoa solids)
200g unsalted butter
4 medium eggs
150g caster sugar
60g plain flour
1½ tsp baking powder
Extra virgin olive oil
Fleur de sel (sea salt)
1. Preheat the oven to 200C/400F. Grease and flour a 22cm sandwich tin.
2. Melt the chocolate in a heat proof bowl over a saucepan of hot simmering water. add butter and stir well to mix the two ingredients completely.
3. Put the eggs and the sugar in a bowl and whisk with kitchen mixer until the mixture turns pale and doubles in volume. Add the flour, a tablespoonful at a time, and the baking powder.
4. Mix in the chocolate mixture, pour the lot into the prepared sandwich tin and bake for 30-40 minutes. The cake is cooked when a knife inserted into the centre comes out clean.
5. Leave the cake to cool for 15 minutes before turning out.
6. To serve, cut the cake into slices, set them on plain white plates and pour some extra virgin olive oil around. Sprinkle with some fluer de sel on the cake and serve.
REMINDER: WIN Peruvian Olive Green Organics Hamper Competition
Beloved Australia/NZ readers! Don't forget to enter the 'A taste of Peru' competition and WIN Olive Green Organics Hampers! There are three hampers to be won! The competition closes tomorrow, 12th Nov 2009, 11.59am AEST.