Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Gateau Chocolat Framboise

On Sunday, it was my friend Veronica's birthday, so her friend Margot and I took her to breakfast at Richmond Hill Cafe and Larder. This cafe is a Melbourne institution, and needs no introduction. The food was just marvellous, and well worth the 40 minute wait for a table. Veronica had pancakes with pears, cardamom, cassia and blood orange curd, Margot had the fruit toast and I had porridge with, among other things, pumpkin seed brittle. The food tasted as good as it sounded on the menu, and was very filling. A wonderful range of gourmet jams and relishes, cheeses and breads are also on sale at the cafe.

For afters, I made Gateau Chocolat Framboise (or Chocolate Raspberry Cake for those who, like me, don't speak French!) from p209 of the delightful Clotilde Dusoulier's Chocolate & Zucchini recipe book.

This cake, pictured above, is more akin to a shell-less chocolate tart than a cake. It is extremely dense and chocolatey, containing almost an entire block of chocolate and plenty of butter. However, as you can only manage a small slice of this melt-in-the-mouth, fudgy delicacy, you do not have to worry about your waistline. The raspberries give the cake a little bit of zing to contrast with the intense chocolate taste.

My cake does not look as elegant as the one in Clotilde's photograph, primarily because I had to ice it to cover up a failed attempt at piping Veronica's name in white chocolate on the top. No matter - it tasted delicious, and Veronica loved it.

If you choose to make this cake, you need to be prepared well in advance, as it must be refrigerated for at least 8 hours. Don't attempt to lift the cake from its springform pan base until it has completely chilled - I found to my peril that this cake is rather fragile until it has chilled and I almost lost it.

While it is not a cheap cake to make, with ample quantities of chocolate and raspberries being crucial ingredients, it is well worth it for a special occasion, and the taste is sinfully devine. Happy birthday Veronica!!

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