01 October, 2009

Chef Gwynnie

When Gwyneth Paltrow announced the The River Cafe as one of her favorite and most used cookbooks during an episode of Spain...On the Road Again I logged onto my Amazon wish list without missing a beat. On the heels of this golden recommendation was a River Cafe mention in Town & Country. Gwynnie...Town & Country...the bifecta of good taste...

I have an enormous weakness for Italian food and a history as a child of asking Santa to bring me spaghetti. Poor Santa, if only my tastes had remained a smidge more Chef Boyardee and little less Van Cleef and Arpels...

Unfortunately, my palette has also graduated and dessert has usurped any main course on my list of culinary priorities. So, naturally I managed to ferret out the most decadent offering once my copy of the The River Cafe Cookbook arrived. The entire cookbook is fabulous, and I would expect nothing less from a Gwynnie recommendation, but I plan on hanging my hat on the Chocolate Nemesis. Also referred to as, "the best chocolate cake ever" by the authors...

Serves 10-12

1 1/2 lb bitter-sweet chocolate, broken into small pieces
10 whole eggs
1 lb, 5 oz caster sugar
1 lb unsalted butter

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Line a 12 x 2 in cake tin with greaseproof paper, then grease and flour it.

Beat the eggs with a third of the sugar until the volume quadruples - this will take at least 10 minutes in an electric mixer.

Heat the remaining sugar in a small pan with 8 fl oz water until the sugar has completely dissolved to a syrup.

Place the chocolate and butter in the hot syrup and stir to combine. Remove from the heat and allow to cool slightly.

Add the warm syrup to the eggs and continue to beat, rather more gently, until completely combined - about 20 seconds, no more. Pour into the cake tin and place in a bain-marie of hot water. It is essential, if the cake is to cook evenly, that the water comes up to the rim of the tin. Bake in the oven for 30 minutes or until set. Test by placing the flat of your hand gently on the surface.

Leave to cool in the tin before turning out

Kindness of reliable ole GP...


  1. just found your blog and I love it! I just sent you an email with a link I hope you will like!

  2. that looks delish! I was wondering if you had any suggestions for mani/pedi's in Georgetown? Some girl friends and i are headed there and thought that would be a fun thing to do if we can tear ourselves away from the amazing shopping!

  3. this looks incredible- I'm going to have to scoop up this book! you're not alone in asking Santa for food- my sis was known to ask Santa for honey-glazed, spiral cut hams.

    ps- you're tagged :)


  4. Yum! Looks delicious, and with so few ingredients.

  5. That sounds delish! I must pick up a copy of that book! I've been cheffing like a mad fiend lately making meals and deserts from scratch for the last 4 days! Thanks for the tip!

  6. My biggest weakness dessert, oh that cake does sound amazing!

  7. oh my god, that sounds absolutely to die for. I'll think of you when I'm logging extra hours at the gym to make up for it!

  8. This looks simply. sinful. Yumalicious to the nth degree, and better yet, the recipe looks manageable, what a bonus! Thank you for sharing it.

    May your Friday be fabulous!

  9. oh my word, this followed by yesterday's diet coke....what will you show us next?

  10. A cake with no flour - is this more like fudge?