Chocolate, butter, eggs, sugar. Four ingredients. That’s all it takes to create the perfectly moist, dense and, lucky for us, chametz-free cake. No substitutes, matzo meal this, potato starch that.
The recipe, fittingly called Chocolate Idiot Cake (it’s so simple you’d have to be an idiot to mess it up) comes courtesy of food writer and ice cream maker extraordinaire David Lebovitz, former San Francisco native, now Paris-based expat.
Chocolate Idiot Cake
- 10 oz bittersweet or semisweet chocolate coarsely chopped
- 7 oz butter salted or unsalted, cut into pieces we used unsalted
- 5 large eggs at room temperature RMJ note: use the freshest eggs possible!
- 1 C sugar
Preheat the oven to 350F.
Butter a 9" springform pan and dust it with cocoa powder, tapping out any excess. If you suspect your springform pan isn't 100% water-tight, wrap the outside with aluminum foil, making sure it goes all the way up to the outer rim. (This step is very important, otherwise you end up with strangely spongy cake bottom. RMJ note: This happened to us the first time we attempted this cake, so yes, very important!)
Melt the chocolate and butter in a double boiler, stirring occasionally, until smooth. Remove from heat.
In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs and sugar, then whisk in the melted chocolate mixture until smooth. RMJ note: Whisk the eggs thoroughly before adding in the chocolate mixture, otherwise you may end up with wierd bits of egg white baked into the pudding.
Pour the batter into the prepared springform pan and cover the top of the pan snugly with a sheet of foil. Put the springform pan into a larger baking pan adding enough hot water to the baking pan to come about halfway up to the outside of the cake pan.
Bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes. (The cake is done when it feels just set. If you gently touch the center, your finger should come away clean.)
Lift the cake pan from the water bath and remove the foil. Let cake cool completely on a cooling rack.
The cake is wonderfully rich, so serve in thin wedges, accompanied by a dollop of lightly whipped cream or a warm compote.