This is a variation on my 'Not Just Another Chocolate Cake’, a lovely, rich, no-flour, no-almond meal cake. I like to serve mine with lightly whipped cream or ice-cream, and caramelised apples or pears. I use Wilmot Hills apple brandy from Tasmania. In the absence of apple brandy (in France they call it Calvados), use brandy, rum or even whisky.


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  • 400 g dark chocolate (70% cocoa solids), roughly chopped
  • 100 g unsalted butter
  • 100 g salted butter
  • 5 eggs, separated
  • ½ tsp white vinegar
  • 3 tsp apple brandy or rum
  • cocoa, to dust

Cook's notes

Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.


Preheat oven to 160°C. Grease and line a 24 cm springform pan. Fill a small saucepan one-third full with water and bring to a gentle simmer. Place the chocolate and butter in a small heatproof bowl, place over pan and stir for 5 minutes or until melted – take care not to overheat mixture, and don’t let the bowl touch the water. Set aside to cool slightly.

Using an electric mixer, whisk egg yolks for 5 minutes or until thick and pale. Using an electric mixer, whisk egg whites with vinegar in a clean, separate bowl to soft peaks. (The tops of the peaks should flop over a little when you lift out the whisk, however, the egg whites need to be whisked enough that they aren’t runny and won’t easily slide from the bowl when it’s inverted.)

Fold chocolate into the egg yolks. Fold one-third of the egg whites into the chocolate mixture until well combined. Gently fold in another third of the egg whites, and then gently fold in the remainder with the brandy, ensuring all egg white is combined.

Pour mixture into the prepared pan and place in the oven. Bake for 50 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. Allow to cool in the pan. Gently remove from pan and dust with cocoa before serving. Store leftover cake in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days. Remove from the fridge 15 minutes before serving.

As seen in Feast magazine, Issue 8, pg40.

Photography by Alan Benson.