Chocolate, Cooking
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Decadence: Claudia Roden’s Flourless Gateau Au Chocolate with a Lick of Chocolate Ganache Frosting

Claudia Roden's Gateau Au Chocolat with Ganache Frosting

I have a Kitchenaid. At last. I feel like I have always wanted one, perhaps I have, although it’s realistic to say that in my early years, I was craving sweets a big stronger.

It is bright pink and stands proudly in my kitchen. I have been sent one to review – disclaimer – and I have been happily whipping up cakes and brownies and all sorts of other bits and pieces that are detrimental to my waistline but so, so good for my soul.

My Bright Pink Kitchen Soldier

It has made life very quick and convenient. We had a few run ins but I soon realised that that is because I was putting too much in the bowl. 1.5kg bread too much. That was a bit silly, it is a home mixer, not an industrial one, and treated as such – with one cake mix, not three – it works like a charm. It is tough and quick, and the patisserie attachment has been very useful, especially for my new baking experiments that have been taking place in my kitchen.

I don’t often write about cakes, for several reasons. They require precision and following the rules, and I find this restrictive and annoying. I can almost see my Home Economics teacher watching me carefully from the corner of the room. I think it’s part of my rejection of my previous scientific education. I have now decided to embrace it and learn the language properly, not just the stuff I know and learned at home in school, but more ambitious stuff, so that I can be as creative with my baking as I am with everything else that I cook at home.

This seems a pointless pre-amble now as Gateau au Chocolate is not my recipe but one from food superstar Claudia Roden. But I can’t resist a rich, dense chocolate cake. It is full of great stuff: eggs, ground almonds, butter and rich dark chocolate. I used Green & Blacks Cooking Chocolate which I find rich and dense with some lovely orange / citrus undertones. It’s protein rich, with just a whisper of sugar, a proper adults chocolate cake. You kids will need to look somewhere else.

Chocolate Ganache

I thought it looked a bit naked just on its own, so I whipped up a quick chocolate ganache to cover it with. It worked very well. Any leftovers can become truffles too.

The recipe has featured in many books, I got this from the Green & Black’s Ultimate: Chocolate Recipes: The New Collection, which has been sitting on my shelf for a year now unloved, I am ashamed to confess. It’s a lovely book with some gorgeous recipes and I will be trying more of them soon.

The recipe is unchanged except for the ordering of it. I changed it simply so that it was more practical for me.

Recipe: Claudia Roden’s Gateau Au Chocolate with a Lick of Chocolate Ganache Frosting



250g dark chocolate (70% or above recommended)
100g unsalted butter (optional but I used it), plus extra for greasing
6 large free range eggs, seperated
75g caster sugar
100g ground almonds
Flour or matzo meal for dusting


150ml double cream
150g dark chocolate



Preheat your oven 180 deg C. Grease a 23cm cake pan and dust with your flour / matzo.

Melt the chocolate and butter in a pan over another (slightly larger) pan of water, or a double boiler.

Whisk the egg whites in a clean mixer bowl until white and fluffy with dense peaks, as you would for meringue. Leave to the side.

Refill your mixer bowl with sugar and butter and beat until light and fluffy (they will be pale and creamy).

Add the ground almonds and melted chocolate and butter and mix thoroughly. Gently fold in the whisked egg whites, taking care not to knock out the air.

Pour into your cake tin and make for 30 – 45 minutes. Test it by sticking a metal skewer or knife through it, when it comes out dry, it’s done. I found mine was perfect at 35 minutes.


Just as the cake is cooled, melt your chocolate as before. Stir through the cream and spread all over the cake once it’s cooled and out of the cake tin.




  1. I love Kitchenaid too but we have had the same problem in ‘overloading’ and forgetting you cannot crank out a bigger quantity. But when used right they are every cooks dream to have in the kitchen. Love the pink.

  2. I love my KitchenAid, so much so I’m considering a second bowl – I use it to knead bread too. Have you tried filling your own sausages? Much hilarity always ensues in our house as it always goes just a fraction too fast for us! Your pink model is divine.

    Haven’t tried this chocolate gateau (yet) but can heartily recommend the Chocolate Iced Mille Feuilles and the White Chocolate & Cardamom Rice Pudding.

  3. I finally bought a Kitchenaid this week!!!! I have wanted one forever but couldn’t justify the cost. However, those handheld mixers were getting on my nerves now that I am baking more.
    I used it yesterday to make a carrot cake. However, I did something silly when I was making the cream cheese icing. I poured in the icing and immediately set the speed to 8!! YIKES I had icing sugar everywhere!!!

  4. I have had a Kitchen Aid for about 6 years now and don’t know where I would be without it. My mother also has one, it’s the industrial one but it doesn’t have a hinge to lift the paddle out of the bowl – I find this terribly inconvenient, although as you say, it does make 3 cakes and not one. This particular chocolate cake looks great however I have one problem in my house, the entire mix never makes it into the tin! The 5 and 4 year old scavengers are deftly dipping in spoons, lego, hands and anything else they can get a good scoop out with. I have had to resort to chocolate cake making after dark!

  5. abillows says

    I love my Kitchenaid! It just looks so pretty sitting in the kitchen, mine is red! I have a very similar recipe on my site to this, made with ground walnuts, by Joel Durand, a fantastic chocolatier in St Remy de Provence. Delicious and as you can only eat a tiny bit because its so rich, you don’t feel too guilty!

  6. Great that this is flourless and also that it doesn’t have too much sugar in it. It looks fabulous and i love the fact that you have topped it with the ganache.
    I have a 8 year old kitchen aid that is still going strong that I LOVE!! Sadly its not pink. (jealous!!)
    My home ec teacher used to make us dip our fingers in mustard powder if we stuck our fingers in the cake mixture – I would be risking the mustard to taste this one.

  7. Beachhutcook says

    I so want a kitchenaid, don’t know why but sometimes you’ve just got to go with it haven’t you. I will have one day, yeah? It’s a question of which colour?

  8. Oh how I would love to own one of those kitchen aids! They’re a bit on the pricey side for my current financial situation but they are most definitely on my “to buy when I have money” list!

  9. I love my Kitchenaid too. And I adore the sound of this cake. Dense and chocolately – what could be better?
    And what is it about home economics teachers? I don’t know if anyone has good memories of theirs

  10. I am the proud owner of 2 KitchenAid Mixers and for me they are the crown jewels in my kitchen. Recently I was given a glass bowl for my KitchenAid and found it very useful when teaching some students baking… they can see through the bowl. Love your blog. Moya

  11. I really really want a Kitchen Aid…it’s not so much the cost as a space issue; my kitchen is already groaning with equipment and it’s only tiny. But this pink version is so beautiful! Cake looks absolutely delicious too :-)

    • I fell in love with both this weekend! Space is an issue, true, I have to keep some of my kitchen stuff in storage at the moment.

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  13. Jill Taylor says

    Girl after my heart – why make one cake at a time when you can make 3?? ;-)
    Do you get to keep it after you’ve reviewed it? Lucky you, although not being a pink fan I might baulk at the colour.
    I have a great recipe for wheat free choc brownies – if you fancy trying, let me know.

  14. I made your decadent choc cake – with an ordinary hand blender, too. It came out a dream, thanks for the inspiration. Can I just point out – very German-fussily – that you have a little typo in your recipe:
    “Refill your mixer bowl with sugar and butter and beat until light and fluffy (they will be pale and creamy” instead of butter you mean egg yolks, probably.
    big HI from Munich! ilse

  15. ursa53 says

    ‘leftovers’ what about leftovers *giggle*
    i came here by ilse above
    love this recipe and love my hot red kitchen aid
    got it by my children as present
    they know what i adore and like a good cake
    bookmarked your site
    lg birgit

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