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This single-layer chocolate cake had no flour, yet there was nothing lacking in its flavors. In fact, the chocolate aromas were intoxicating while it baked. Once done, it was moist, tender, bold and hard to put down. Slice and enjoy it as a simple chocolate cake. Or if you want it more indulgent, pile on some homemade chocolate frosting. With or without frosting, it is just superb. This is an Asian In America recipe. Serves 4 to 6.
4 ounces (113 g.) semi-sweet baking chocolate bar
1 tablet Filipino tablea
½ cup unsalted butter
¾ cup granulated sugar
3 large whole eggs
¼ cup melted unsalted butter, for frosting
¼ cup cocoa powder, for frosting
1/8 cup milk, for frosting
2 cups powdered sugar, for frosting
½ teaspoon vanilla extract, for frosting
- Preheat the oven to 375 F degrees. Prepare a round 8-inch baking pan. Grease with cooking spray and line the bottom with parchment or wax paper.
- Place the chocolate and tablea in a plastic bag; seal and pound with a mallet to chop into small pieces.
- Over a double boiler that's on simmering water, melt the chocolate with ½ cup butter. Stir continuously till smooth. This melts in about 8 to 10 minutes.
- Remove the chocolate-butter mixture from the heat. Whisk in the sugar to this mixture.
- Continue to whisk so the temperature of the chocolate cools down a bit. Then add the eggs and whisk well. (Note: you want the chocolate temperature cooled down so that the eggs do not cook accidentally if you put them in too early).
- Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Bake at 375 F degrees for 25 minutes. Test for doneness. When done, cool cake in the pan for about 5 minutes.
- While cake is cooling, make the frosting.
- To make the frosting: combine the melted butter and chocolate powder by whisking well. Using a mixer, blend in alternately a few teaspoons of milk, then the powdered sugar. Start and end with the powdered sugar. Lastly, add the vanilla extract. Cool chocolate frosting in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes for easier spreading.
- To frost the cake: make sure cake is thoroughly cooled, at least 1 to 2 hours. Spread the chocolate frosting evenly with a spatula.
- Ingredient availability and substitution: The Filipino Tablea is available in Asian markets where there are Philippine products or online groceries for ethnic cooking ingredients. One round tube package (200 gm.) contains 10 tablets, each measuring 1-inch in diameter. If it is not convenient to find, you can omit and continue baking the above recipe with the indicated semi sweet baking chocolate bar, but whisk in 1/2 cup of cocoa powder to the batter, after chocolate has melted. The cake will be just as delicious, but slightly less dark.
Elizabeth Ann Quirino, based in New Jersey is a journalist and author of the “How to Cook Philippine Desserts: Cakes and Snacks” Cookbook. She is a member of the International Association of Culinary Professionals and blogs about Filipino home cooking on her site AsianInAmericaMag.com.
More articles from Elizabeth Ann Quirino