This fondant (melted, in French) is so easy to make, keeps well overnight so it's perfect to make ahead if you're serving it at a party, and - most importantly - it's unbelievably delicious! No need for special ingredients other than the very best dark chocolate you can get, no complicated techniques, no gadgets needed other than a whisk or a spoon, and takes no more than 45 min. from start to finish (once you have all the ingredients lined up... mise en place)!
In all the years I've made this cake, I can't believe I haven't photographed it until now. Enjoy!
FONDANT AU CHOCOLAT: MELTED CHOCOLATE CAKE + WALNUTS
makes: 1 8 in. cake, 6-8 servings
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 2/3 cup water
- 6 oz. dark chocolate, roughly chopped (I usually use 55%-65% Valrhona)
- 3/4 cup butter, diced
- 2 eggs, lightly beaten
- 1/2 cup AP flour
- 1/2 cup chopped walnuts (or any other nuts, or none if you want a plain cake)
Confectioner's sugar for dusting (optional)
- Combine the sugar with the water in a medium saucepan and heat until it simmers and the sugar is dissolved. Don't boil the sugar and water mixture! Add the chocolate and stir until melted. Add the butter and stir until melted. Remove from heat and let it cool for a few minutes while you prep the next steps.
- Put a deep baking sheet (or an oven-proof pan large enough to hold the cake pan) in the middle of the oven. Preheat the oven (with the baking sheet/pan in it) to 350F/180C. Grease an 8 in. cake pan with butter and line the bottom with parchment paper; lightly brush the parchment with butter. Boil 2-3 cups water.
- Add the lightly beaten eggs into the chocolate mixture and whisk until mixed well. Mix in the flour and chopped walnuts (or whatever nuts you're using, if any). Pour the batter into the greased cake pan, set the pan on the rimmed baking sheet in the oven, and pour hot water into the rimmed baking sheet until it reaches a depth of 1/2 in. or so.
- Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, until the center is firm (but not too firm or else the sides will be overcooked). Let it cool for a while before turning it out onto a serving plate, and let it cool completely before dusting with confectioner's sugar.
- Serve as is with coffee, or with whipped cream (the cake is sweet enough that we like it with unsweetened whipped cream). Or if you have an impossibly sweet tooth: serve with vanilla ice-cream.