I had forgotten how good this cake was. I didn´t even try to make you guess the secret ingredient. As the word implies it has black pepper in it. A regular chocolate loaf with a piquant aftertaste that just makes your mouth tingle.
It´s extra chocolaty since it has both melted chocolate and cocoa, which in my opinion is the ultimate way to achieve the deepest chocolate taste.
I´m so happy these days. I had to make a few work related decisions in the last few months, and they are all coming together wonderfully. The feeling of scary emptiness turned into happy emptiness, with that familiar void of anticipation when things start to change for the better.
So we should celebrate with chocolate cake in loaf form and some black pepper in the batter. Just to spice things up. Just because I´m feeling happy and want everyone to feel that way too.
I added some dulce de leche and sprinkled ground nuts and chocolate cookie crumbs… just because. This is a great plain chocolate pepper cake with a wonderful crunchy top.
This recipe was served to Jacques Pepin and he had a hard time figuring out the `exotic´ flavor.
from Maida Heatter´s Best Dessert Book Ever, by Maida Heatter
Note: I use drip coffee, but 1 Tbs instant coffee with 1 1/3 cups boiling water can be substituted.
3 oz. (85g) semisweet chocolate (I use 57% Callebaut)
2 oz. (60g) unsweetened chocolate (I use 70% Callebaut)
1 1/3 cups hot coffee
1 ¾ cups sifted all purpose flour (sift before measuring)
¼ cup cocoa powder (preferable Dutch-process)
1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon black pepper, ground fine
4 oz. (115g) unsalted butter, room tº
1 ½ teaspoon vanilla extract or paste
2 cups granulated sugar
3 large eggs
Preheat oven to 325º F / 170º C
Butter or spray two 8x4-inch (10x20cm) loaf pans. Dust with bread or plain cookie crumbs (I used ground chocolate plain cookies I use for my cheesecake bases). Tap to remove excess and set aside.
In a small saucepan heat chocolates with coffee. Stir until chocolate melts and is well incorporated. Turn off heat and reserve.
Sift (yes, again) flour, cocoa, baking powder, salt and pepper and set aside.
Cream butte and sugar for 1 or 2 minutes, add vanilla then eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.
Add dry ingredients in three additions, alternating with chocolate mixture in two additions. The batter will be quite thin.
Pour evenly into the prepared pans and bake for about 1 hour or until tester comes out clean. If top is browning too quickly but cake is not done, cover loosely with a piece of foil and continue baking.
Cool on wire rack, unmold and serve.