Intense Dark Chocolate Cake

Chocoholic CakeA recipe for a dense chocolate cake with chocolate icing.

Source:  Adapted from Chocolate Armagnac Cake by Dorie Greenspan in her book, Baking: From My Home to Yours

I got such a sweet deal on these two Dorie Greenspan cookbooks recently.  I was beyond excited when Around My French Table and Baking arrived in an Amazon box on my front porch.  I spent days drooling over recipes, and trying to decide which to make first.  I changed my mind several times. Lemon Tart?  Basque Cake?  Devil’s Food?  Indecision haunted me… 

…until I found this Chocolate Armagnac Cake.

**WARNING!! Only serve this cake to the most dedicated chocoholics!**

**The intense flavor of this cake is not for the faint of heart.**

I’m not sure what drew me in first.  I don’t think it was the picture, because it is not on the same page as the recipe, and it was the recipe I saw first.  I’m pretty sure it was the first sentence, which began, “This extremely intense chocolatey chocolate cake….”  You had me at chocolate, Dorie.

Intense Dark Chocolate

Well, I made some changes, but not so much because I wanted to.  First, I was completely out of walnuts, much to my chagrin.  I reluctantly used extra flour to compensate.  I was completely out of bittersweet chocolate, too, but I had plenty of dark chocolate, so I used that instead.  I didn’t figure anyone would complain about it.  I also left out the armagnac-soaked prunes.  I have nothing against prunes, but I don’t drink, so spending time and money on Armagnac that I won’t drink didn’t appeal to me much.  I decided, sadly, to just leave it out.

This is not exactly your typical bake-it-until-the-toothpick-comes-out-clean kind of cake.  Dorie recommends you remove it from the oven when a knife inserted near the center comes out streaky.  Mine came out clean… dang it!

It’s completely inedible now!  I absolutely cannot serve that to anyone!  (except myself.)

Actually, even though the knife came out clean, when I cut into the cake, I still found some lovely gooey-ness dotted through the cake, mostly near the center.  It was seriously perfect.

I had a hard time letting mine cool enough to frost.  I could smell the chocolate nirvana all through the house.  The neighbors could probably smell it, too.  Seriously, if you want to drive people crazy, bake this when you have a hungry crowd in your house.

It’s weird, but I can honestly say that this is one of my favorite things I have ever put in my mouth… and I will probably not make it very often at all.  It is so intensely chocolate, it absolutely cannot be eaten without a glass of milk.  In fact, the slice I cut in the picture was about double the size it needed to be.  A small sliver will give you your recommend allowance of dark chocolate for the month.  I wished that I had a scoop of vanilla ice cream to go with it.  A small slice of this intense chocolate cake and a scoop of good quality vanilla bean ice cream would literally be… well…


Intense Dark Chocolate Cake
Cook time
Total time
A dense cake with an intense dark chocolate flavor and chocolate glaze.
Recipe type: Cakes
Serves: 8
  • 7 oz. dark chocolate
  • 4 T. butter
  • 3 T. water
  • 3 eggs
  • ⅔ cup sugar
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • ½ cup flour
  • 3 oz. dark chocolate
  • 3 T. powdered sugar
  • 3 T. butter
  1. FOR CAKE: Over double boiler (or in microwave in 30-second intervals) melt chocolate, butter, and water together, stirring. Remove from heat as soon as everything is melted and combined.
  2. Separate egg whites from yolks. In separate bowl, mix sugar and egg yolks together. Add melted chocolate mixture and stir to combine.
  3. Add salt and flour, and stir gently to combine.
  4. In separate bowl, beat egg whites until they form stiff peaks. Gently fold whites into chocolate batter.
  5. Grease round layer pan. (I used wax paper in the bottom, and sprayed generously with non-stick spray.) Pour batter into pan.
  6. Bake at 375 degrees for 20-25 minutes, until knife inserted near the center comes out nearly clean.
  7. Turn cake upside down to cool and frost.
  8. FOR FROSTING: Melt chocolate (over double boiler or in microwave in 30-second intervals). Add powdered sugar and stir. Add butter and stir.
  9. For runny glaze, pour immediately over cake.
  10. For thicker frosting, allow glaze to cool before pouring onto cake and spreading.
  11. Allow cake and frosting to cool completely before serving.

If you enjoy this recipe, you might also enjoy:

Triple Chocolate Oreo Chunk Cookies from Jen’s Favorite Cookies

Molten Lava Cake from Our Best Bites


3 thoughts on “Intense Dark Chocolate Cake

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