Always and forever chocolate cake has been and will be the number one on my list of all-time favorite cakes. It’s the best for every occasion and I am not only talking about birthdays. Chocolate cake for breakfast had happened before and can be used as a treatment to keep me mentally in balance on days with a high-potential of uncontrolled craziness. This fudgy chocolate-hazelnut cake is the king of all chocolate cakes, there is no way any of them can taste more chocolaty.
The vanilla and the espresso are seasonings and rather in a supporting role, add more if you like this fudgy chocolate-hazelnut-cake can handle it. You can achieve more depth of chocolate flavors with using a mix of milk, semi-sweet and dark chocolate. I kept this recipe simple and just used 70% chocolate. However chocolate is the main ingredient and for the best result use good quality that you would enjoy eating on its own.
fudgy chocolate-hazelnut cake
This cake has many faces: dense and moist like a brownie and an intense chocolate power but not gooey and neither sweet and with the roasted hazelnuts like a dark/grown up version of nutella.
- 200 g / ¾ cup + 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 230 g / 8.1 oz. 70 % dark chocolate
- 6 large eggs, whites and yolks separated
- 200 g / 1 cup sugar
- 200 g / 7 oz. hazelnuts, roasted and finely ground
- 3 tablespoons natural cocoa powder (unsweetened)
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch (or potato starch)
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons instant coffee or espresso dissolved in 1 teaspoon water
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- for the ganache:
- 100 g / 3.5 oz. 70 % dark chocolate
- 60 ml / ¼ cup heavy cream
- Preheat your oven to 190 C / 375 F and grease a 26 cm / 9-inch spring form.
- Melt the chocolate in a double boiler or in your microwave oven, add the butter and stir. The warm chocolate will melt the butter and cool a little bit at the same time, set aside.
- Beat the egg yolks and the sugar until pale, takes about 3-5 minutes.
- Add the cooled chocolate/butter and mix. Then add the ground hazelnuts, cocoa powder, starch, salt, coffee, and vanilla extract and mix again.
- Beat the egg whites until stiff peaks form.
- Add ⅓ of the beaten egg whites to your batter and fold in with a spoon or rubber spatula, continue adding a ⅓ of the egg whites at a time.
- Pour into the springform pan and bake for about 35 minutes, make sure not to overbake the fudgy chocolate-hazelnut cake.
- Remove the sides of the springform pan and let cool completely before you apply the ganache.
- For the ganache: In a small saucepan over low heat, bring the heavy cream to simmer, add the chocolate. Stir well until smooth and let cool to room temperature before spreading over the cake.