• Day and night cake (David Mane)Source: David Mane

A confection of eggs, nuts, chocolate and sugar – it’s simple, delicious and quite spectacular. The ‘day' half (egg whites and almonds) and the ‘night' half (egg yolks, chocolate and hazelnuts) are baked together, then covered with a chocolate ganache. 






Skill level

Average: 3.2 (86 votes)

The cake is gluten-free and dairy-free, but the ganache has butter in it. Just in case you need it, there's also a recipe for a dairy-free ganache.


  • 90g (3oz) dark chocolate
  • 6 eggs, separated
  • 155g (¾ cup) caster sugar
  • 85g (1 cup) ground hazelnuts
  • 100g (1 cup) ground almonds
  • Pomegranate seeds to decorate
  • Sour jam, such as plum or cherry (optional)

Chocolate ganache

  • 100 g chocolate
  • 50 g butter
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 3 tbsp strong coffee (liquid)

Dairy-free chocolate ganache

  • 100 g dark chocolate
  • 400 ml tin coconut milk, use ⅓ of the tin
  • 2 tbsp powdered or icing sugar

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.


You will need to begin this cake one day in advance.

If using coconut milk, place it in the fridge at least an hour before use, or overnight.

1. To make the night cake, preheat oven to 300°F / 150°C / 140°C fan-forced. Grease and flour a cake tin. Tip: Use a small tin 17.5 cm / 7 in for a taller cake.

2. Melt chocolate in a microwave, or use a double boiler (a pot set over a second pot containing gently boiling water, which allows the steam to melt the chocolate).

3. Separate 5 eggs. Add the remaining whole egg to the bowl with the yolks. Beat yolks and egg with 50 g / ¼ cup of the sugar until light and doubled in bulk – about 5 minutes. Add cooled melted chocolate and ground hazelnuts.

4. Pour into a baking tin. This mixture is heavier, so it goes in first.

5. To make the day cake, beat the 5 egg whites till soft peaks form. Add remaining 100 g / ½ cup sugar. Beat till stiff. Fold in the ground almonds.

6. Spoon over the chocolate layer in the baking tin. Bake for 30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the cake comes out clean. Remove from oven. When cake has cooled, cover first with a layer of sour jam, if using, and then the ganache.

7. To make the chocolate ganache, put 1 one teaspoon instant coffee into 3 tablespoons boiling water. Set aside.

8. Melt chocolate. Add butter and stir till it melts and combines with the chocolate. Stir in coffee, then egg yolk. When smooth, pour over cake. Leave to set.

9. To make the dairy-free chocolate ganache, melt the chocolate. Remove coconut milk from fridge. Take care not to shake the can, so that you can use the creamy bit from the top. Add to chocolate and beat with a whisk for 3–5 minutes, on top of a double boiler or in a pot over very low heat. Sift in the icing sugar and when it's smooth and shiny, pour over cake. Set in fridge.

Images and recipes from Just Add Love by Irris Makler, RRP $49.99, Photography by David Mane.