Flourless Chocolate Pecan Cake

The run-up to Christmas is traditionally a time for baking delicious cakes to enjoy and share over the holiday season. If someone in the family is a coeliac sufferer or has a gluten intolerance, it makes most sense to make a bake all the family will enjoy. This cake recipe I’m sharing with you is certainly not lacking for the want of wheat flour. It is simply bursting with flavour and will be relished by all at the table whether they need to avoid gluten or not.

This light, but luscious, chocolate cake would be the perfect indulgence to enjoy as a festive afternoon treat. It’s important to beat the eggs and sugar together for ten minutes, as this adds volume to the mixture creating an impressive light bake. The cake will naturally sink in the centre while it is cooling. I’ve simply smothered the top with chocolate ganache, but this crater-like centre could easily be filled in with some softly whipped cream, as cream and chocolate cake marry so perfectly together. 

Chocolate Pecan Cake
150g pecans
200g dark chocolate, approx. 55% cocoa, broken into pieces 
175g butter
200g caster sugar
4 medium-sized free-range eggs
Chocolate Ganache
100ml double cream
200g rich milk chocolate, 35% cocoa, broken into pieces
½ pomegranate, seeds only

1. Preheat the oven to 190°C/fan 170°C/Gas mark 5. Thoroughly brush a 26cm springform tin with some melted butter.
2. Place the pecans on a dry pan, over a low heat and toss regularly until lightly toasted. Remove to a board and finely chop. 
3. In a saucepan, over a gentle heat, melt the chocolate with the butter. Stir well to avoid the chocolate sticking. Once melted and well combined, take from the heat and leave to cool.
4. Using an electric mixer on a high speed, whisk the sugar and eggs together for 10 minutes, until the mixture is pale yellow and fluffy.
5. Slowly pour in the chocolate mixture and fold well to combine.
6. Fold in the half of the pecans, reserving the rest for the topping.
7. Pour the mixture into the prepared tin and cook in the oven for 35-40 minutes. The top will have set, but the mixture will still be a little gooey. 
8. Remove from the oven and leave to cool completely in the tin.
9. To make the chocolate ganache, place the cream in a small saucepan and heat gently. Once it begins to bubble, remove from the heat and add the chocolate pieces. Whisk well with a fork until combined and the chocolate is completely melted.
10. Once the cake has cooled completely, pour over the ganache and top with the remaining pecans and a sprinkling of pomegranate seeds. 
11. Serve with a generous dollop of whipped cream. Place any remaining cake in an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 3 days.