I did not have high hopes for this recipe, which we discovered in The Great Book of Chocolate by David Lebovitz (which is an awesome book, highly recommended). It has three ingredients and not an ounce of fat, but with our recent ice cream craze, we had a ton of egg whites sitting in the fridge begging to be used, to fulfill their lifelong desire to become a delicious dessert.
This cake is not meant to rise a ton because it doesn't have any flour for structure, but it will still be light. It's kinda like a souffle. When I first tried a bite directly out of the oven, I thought it was disgusting - like a paste of fatless bitter chocolate. So we suffocated the cake in plastic wrap and banished it to the fridge, where it spent the next few nights in darkness, accompanied only by some cold apples in the fruit drawer.
One groggy morning while groping around the fridge for some grub, we subconsciously grabbed the chocolate beast and sliced it into thin slices. Topped with some homemade pastry cream, it was amazing! The bitter fatless chocolate perfectly complimented the creamy, rich, vanilla-y silky smooth cream. And surprisingly, the cake was very moist. The intense bitter edge mellowed out as the cake sat in the fridge, and the result was still very chocolately yet not so sour. There are a few criteria for enjoying this cake:
1. You must like dark chocolate, not just milk chocolate.
2. You must have an open mind - don't think "rich chocolate cake." Think "exotic souffle-like dessert!"
3. You must be desperate to get rid of egg whites.
4. You must resist the urge to eat the cake right out of the oven. The chocolate needs time in the fridge to mellow out and for the flavors to blend.
5. You should serve the cake with something creamy, sweet, and vanilla-y. (whipped cream, pastry cream, creme anglaise, mascarpone mousse...you get the idea)
Considering it's so easy to make, and is relatively healthy, and tastes good, we highly recommend you try it.
3-Ingredient Chocolate Cake
3/4 cup cocoa powder
1/2 cup plus 2 Tbsp (135 g) sugar
7 egg whites, room temp
Sift and whisk cocoa and 1/2 cup (100 g) sugar. Whip egg whites gradually with 2 Tbsp sugar until soft peaks. Fold the two together gently in 3 batches. Bake in a 9-inch springform pan with pan of warm water on the rack below (or do a waterbath with a pan that doesn't leak). Bake 35 minutes. Cool 5 minutes, remove from pan, and cool completely. Wrap in two layers of plastic wrap and stick it in the fridge overnight (for best flavor, 36 hours).