La Bête Noire (Flourless Chocolate Cake), A Guestpost by That Skinny Chick Can Bake

by Spicie Foodie on September 13, 2012

La Bête Noire (Flourless Chocolate Cake), A Guestpost by That Skinny Chick Can Bake

While I am hard at work finishing up my photography eBook my friend Liz, of That Skinny Chick Can Bake, has offered to lend a hand. She has baked a beautiful, decadent, chocoholic’s dream come true. Just look at it! Lizzy’s photos are so beautiful, they not only make my mouth water but also have me wishing for a slice to accompany my work. This Bête Noire or “beautiful beast” is the perfect way of getting the weekend started. Take it away Liz!

La Bête Noire (Flourless Chocolate Cake), A Guestpost by That Skinny Chick Can Bake

When Nancy invited me to guest post, I jumped at the chance. And she was sweet enough to allow me to share one of my older posts…but I knew I had to update the photos. Those of you who are already fans of Nancy’s blog know what an amazing photographer she is…and I was hoping to get a few new shots worthy of her gorgeous blog. If this is your first time visiting, make sure to check Nancy’s informative series on food photography…she is an artist with a superb eye for beauty. You will come back again and again.

La Bête Noire (Flourless Chocolate Cake), A Guestpost by That Skinny Chick Can Bake

My youngest son, Nick, was coming home from college after nearly a of month living and eating in the dorms. I knew I’d need to greet him with the most decadent chocolate dessert I could create. I went back to my early days of blogging to this insanely rich and scrumptious flourless chocolate cake. La Bête Noire literally translates to the black beast. There is nothing beastly about this dessert…heavenly is more like it. Silky and smooth, the texture is sublime…

La Bête Noire (Flourless Chocolate Cake), A Guestpost by That Skinny Chick Can Bake

I always use semi-sweet chocolate for this recipe, but feel free to substitute bitter-sweet for a dark chocolate experience. And with 26 ounces of chocolate in this recipe, you can be certain it’s chocolate Nirvana! And it’s really a very simple dessert…5 ingredients and a 10 inch springform pan are all you need. A dollop of sweetened whip cream and a few of your favorite ripe berries create a lovely garnish. You’ll definitely want to treat your favorite chocoholics to this exquisite dessert. Thanks so much, Nancy, for having me on your lovely blog today!

La Bête Noire (Flourless Chocolate Cake), A Guestpost by That Skinny Chick Can Bake

La Bête Noireadapted from Bon Appetit

1 cup water
3/4 cup sugar
9 tablespoons (1 stick plus 1 tablespoon) butter, cut into pieces
18 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped
6 large eggs


1 cup heavy whipping cream
8 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped

Lightly sweetened whipped cream (I always add a dash of vanilla along with a 1/4-1/2 cup
powdered sugar per cup of cream), optional
Raspberries to garnish, optional

Preheat oven to 350. Butter 10 inch springform pan. Line bottom of pan with parchment round, then butter parchment. Wrap 3 layers of heavy duty foil around the outside of the pan, bringing it up to the top of the rim.

Combine 1 cup of water and sugar in a small saucepan and bring to boil. Stir till sugar dissolves, then simmer 5 minutes. Remove from heat.

Gently melt the 9 tablespoons of butter and the 18 ounces of chopped chocolate in microwave. Whisk till smooth. Whisk sugar syrup into chocolate, and cool slightly. Add eggs to chocolate mixture and whisk till well blended. Pour batter into prepared pan. Place cake pan in a large roasting pan. Add enough hot water to roasting pan to come halfway up sides of cake pan.

Bake cake until center no longer jiggles when pan is gently tapped, about 50 minutes. Remove from water bath and place on cooling rack. Cool completely in pan.

For ganache:

Place whipping cream in microwave safe bowl, and microwave till hot. Remove and add the 8 ounces of chopped chocolate. Whisk until smooth. Pour over top of cake still in pan. Gently tilt pan to distribute ganache evenly over top of cake. Refrigerate cake in pan until ganache is set at least 2 hours.

Cake can be made 2 days ahead. Cover and keep refrigerated.

To serve, run knife around pan sides then release sides. Cut cake into wedges and serve with sweetened whipped cream and luscious red raspberries or the fruit garnish of your choice.

Serves 16.

La Bête Noire (Flourless Chocolate Cake), A Guestpost by That Skinny Chick Can Bake

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La Bête Noire (Flourless Chocolate Cake), A Guestpost by That Skinny Chick Can Bake


La Bête Noire (Flourless Chocolate Cake), A Guestpost by That Skinny Chick Can Bake


Thank you so much Liz for sharing this dreamy cake with us, and for lending a hand. Have a great weekend everyone!

All images and recipe are the sole property of Liz Berg and That Skinny Chick Can Bake!!!. Please do not use images nor publish without prior written consent. ~Thank you



in Baked,Desserts-Sweets,Guest Posts

{ 35 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Drena Paulson September 13, 2012 at 6:58 AM

I have made this cake, seriously with this recipe at my restaurant. After more than 100 times I can truly say it is the best Flourless chocolate cake around. I also agree with the use of semisweet chocolate. I do put about an ounce is liqueur in the ganache. My favorites are hazelnut, orange using Grand Mariner, and Chambord. Kailua is a nice touch too. Enjoy!


2 Spicie Foodie September 13, 2012 at 1:37 PM

Hi Drena,
Thanks for the tips, they all sound delicious. I’ve only ever eaten the cake from cafes but Lizzy is really inspiring me to bake my own.


3 Rosa September 13, 2012 at 7:05 AM

What a wonderful cake! Light, yet extremely luscious. A great guest post.




4 Spicie Foodie September 13, 2012 at 1:37 PM

I agree Rosa:) Thanks!


5 Laura (Tutti Dolci) September 13, 2012 at 8:05 AM

Hi Nancy and Liz, fantastic guest post! This cake looks absolutely heavenly, I think I’ll be dreaming about it tonight :).


6 Spicie Foodie September 13, 2012 at 1:38 PM

Hi Laura,

Funny you said that because I had a dream about it last night after setting it up on the blog,hehe:) Thanks!


7 Phong Hong September 13, 2012 at 8:18 AM

Hi Nancy, I’m here for the first time! Aww….Lizzy, I’m swooning and lightheaded just looking at your cake. My eyes became very big as I got closer to my screen and my eyeballs went “boing, boing, boing” ….Gorgeous cake, I MUST make this. Nancy, I will come back and explore later. Ta…..


8 Spicie Foodie September 13, 2012 at 1:38 PM

Hi Phong Hong,

Glad you stopped by:) Hehe, I love your reaction.


9 ping September 13, 2012 at 11:09 AM

I’m with Phong Hong …. “boing, boing, boing” …
This is beastly all right. 8 pictures to boot! I can’t stop staring! and drooling! I’ve never admitted to being a chocoholic but now I am …. there, I said it. Step 1 complete.


10 Spicie Foodie September 13, 2012 at 1:39 PM

I think that reaction might be the one everyone will have:) Haha, good for you as admit the problem is the first step. Thanks for stopping by!


11 Liz September 13, 2012 at 1:47 PM

Oh, thank you, Nancy for your kind introduction! I hope you know that it’s truly a thrill to guest post for you. And I’m glad I could give you a break while you work on your e-book…I will be first in line to purchase one :) xo


12 Balvinder September 13, 2012 at 5:12 PM

My mouth water because it is chocolate and flour less. Perfect for me with whipped cream ganache.


13 RavieNomNoms September 13, 2012 at 6:41 PM

I love you both! What an amazing cake!


14 pachecopatty September 13, 2012 at 7:57 PM

Gorgeous tempting cake and photos! Lizzy, your son Nick is a very lucky young man:-)
Nancy- good luck putting together your photography ebook:-)
Congratulations on a beautiful guest post!


15 Victoria of Flavors of the Sun September 13, 2012 at 9:20 PM

I’ve made this Bon Appetit recipe before, and mine certainly didn’t look like this! Gorgeous! I may have to try again.


16 Swathi September 13, 2012 at 10:14 PM

Delicious chocolate cake , Lizzy makes great desserts nobody can beat it. Thanks Nancy for this guest post.


17 Nami | Just One Cookbook September 13, 2012 at 10:58 PM

So so soooo pretty, Liz! The side view of the cake shows how rich this chocolate cake is! Thank you for sharing Nancy, and good luck with your eBook. We’re waiting for it. ;)


18 Suzanne Perazzini September 13, 2012 at 11:35 PM

Nancy’s photography is superb but you can match her step for step, Liz. These are a wonderful set of images and enough to make you swoon. If I wasn’t on a diet for my upcoming trip, I would race out of work to a cafe and find something similar. Instead I will eat my small homemade granola bar.


19 Ramona September 14, 2012 at 2:03 AM

I have one word to describe Lizzy… AWESOME! She really is such a total package… a great cook, phenomenal baker, fantastic wife, mother, friend and blogger buddy!! This cake looks decadent… gorgeous and perfectly Lizzy. :) Wonderful Guest Post Ladies. :)


20 Beth September 14, 2012 at 2:11 AM

Looking at that ingredient list, I can tell the cake would be nothing short of fabulous!


21 mjskit September 14, 2012 at 5:27 AM

I think I just gained 10 pounds licking the screen, I mean – looking at the screen and these luscious pictures of a your scrumptious cake. Regular cake, I’m not a fan of, but flourless chocolate I think it would be the one dessert I could limit myself to for the rest of my life (if I had to limit myself to one dessert :) ). What a gorgeous cake! Great post ladies!


22 anna September 14, 2012 at 6:39 AM

beautiful pictures! i LOVE the richness of flourless chocolate cake, and i can always sort of tell myself i’m eating something healthy. gluten free, right? right??


23 Gina September 14, 2012 at 6:01 PM

Lizzy sure does know how to make a chocoholics dreams come true. I don’t know if I could be trusted with this beauty in the house. Can’t wait to hear all about the book.


24 Angie@Angie's Recipes September 14, 2012 at 8:15 PM

A rich and luscious chocolate treat! Thanks, Lizzy!


25 Sook September 14, 2012 at 10:20 PM

Oh my… Your photos are making me hungry for chocolatey desserts!! Mmmm


26 Marina@Picnic at Marina September 14, 2012 at 10:52 PM

This cake is absolutely fantastic! Great job, Liz! And thank you, Spice foodie, for inviting Liz. She does know how to bake! :)


27 Jen Laceda | Tartine and Apron Strings September 15, 2012 at 4:55 AM

I know what I’ll be dreaming about tonight…yum!


28 mj@cardamomhills September 15, 2012 at 5:12 PM

ohhh!!! this is bad, like really really bad…What a day to hop by….i baked 22 banana n choco muffin today morning and only 4 r left….now you are going to send me off on another sweet treat when i was avoiding eye contact with anything chocolate…never thought “spicie foodie” wud do it to me ;-) btw- I love those pics and this is one of my all time fav recipes…lizzy, as always tempts me into sinful indulgence!!! Thanks girls for this lovely post!


29 elisabeth@foodandthrift September 15, 2012 at 6:46 PM

Such an amazing and beautiful guest post by two lovely ladies! …Nancy, and Lizzy, I love how you two collaborated this awesome guest post project…Lizzy with your superb flourless chocolate cake. (so nice of you to mention the source) My favorite flourless chocolate cake recipe, as well from Bon Appetit which I also use!

Nancy, you have certainly put your ‘heart and soul’ into producing these gorgeous photos of Lizzy’s to come alive on a grand large ‘scale’…and Lizzy, you are always such an inspiration to all of us, thanks for both lovely and talented ladies! (I pinned from here, too)


30 Liz September 16, 2012 at 2:25 AM

Just popped back in to say THANK YOU for all your kind words! It was my pleasure to share with you all.


31 kitchenriffs September 16, 2012 at 6:11 PM

What a great cake! Very good recipe, nicely detailed. Excellent guest post – thanks so much.


32 vianney September 17, 2012 at 7:02 AM

Rich and delish Liz!! Thank you for sharing~


33 Baker Street September 17, 2012 at 8:59 AM

Simply divine! I adore flourless cakes. Liz has done a fabulous job here with this one. It looks absolutely stunning!


34 Priya September 17, 2012 at 3:01 PM

Excellent and irresistible,makes me drool.


35 Jean (Lemons and Anchovies) September 20, 2012 at 4:49 PM

So nice to see Liz here and what a special cake to bring over for her visit here. I love flourless chocolate cakes and this looks like a winner.

Looking forward to the release of your ebook, Nancy. :)


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