Next Monday is the first night of Passover, the beginning of eight days when most Jews abstain from eating anything containing wheat, spelt, barley, oats, and rye that have come in contact with water for longer than 18 minutes, which means no breads, pastas, cereals, cakes or cookies. Instead, people use special Kosher for Passover products made with unleavened flour matzo cracker meal including cake mixes, cereals, and even pasta which, for the most part, have little to do with the real thing. Passover is a beautiful holiday about passing on the oral history of Judaism, but many of these bland ready-made store bought convenience products just take away from the joy of the holiday.
I’d only been dating my husband a few months when I attended my first Passover seder with his family, but I immediately started to question why the dessert course had to be something he dreaded. Why was it necessary to turn to dry mixes when so many delicious desserts can be made without violating the Passover rules? Ever since, I have been collecting recipes, trying to make his eight days of Passover a flour-less feast no less cravable than the rest of the year, filled with flavorful entrees and memorable desserts that just happen to be Kosher for Passover.
I had a Lunch in Paris pot luck lunch at the house on Friday and made Elizabeth Bard’s Quick and Dirty Chocolate Souffle Cake for dessert. It was absolutely delicious, somehow both rich and light, with intense chocolate flavor. It took less than 10 minutes to get in the oven and was the perfect end to our schmorgasbord of delicious dishes. It was only as I was licking the last crumbs from my fork that I realized it would be the perfect dessert to serve for our Passover seder as it contains no flour.
Quick and Easy Chocolate Souffle Cake (adapted from Lunch in Paris)
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
8 oz of semi-sweet chocolate (I used 2 bars of Ghirardelli)
2 tablespoons of strong coffee
1/4 cup of cream
5 eggs, separated
1/2 cup of sugar
a pinch of salt
2 teaspoons of vanilla
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Lightly butter a large souffle mold.
- In a double boiler, melt the chocolate with the coffee. Once melted, remove from heat and add the heavy cream and vanilla. Stir til smooth and shiny.
- Separate the eggs by putting the yolks in a small bowl and the whites in a large bowl.
- Beat the egg yolks with the sugar until the mixture is a pale yellow, almost like mayonnaise.
- Pour the chocolate mixture on the yolks and beat to combine.
- In a separate bowl, beat the egg whites til the peaks are stiff. About a quarter of the way through, add a tablespoon of sugar to hold the eggs.
- Gently fold a third of the beaten egg whites into the yolk mixture with a spatula. Now add the rest of the chocolate mixture back into the egg whites and blend in gingerly, turning the bowl a quarter after every fold of the spatula. You want the chocolate to be all mixed in, having worked the eggs as little as possible.
- Pour the batter into the buttered dish and bake for 20 minutes. It will puff up and fall as soon as you take it out of the oven. This gives it a wonderful homey look and in no way takes away from the texture and lightness of the cake.