This is a basic gateau au chocolat, but its texture is very light and almost crumbly. You don't usually expect this texture. Although it is light, the inside of the cake is very moist and you'll enjoy the richness of chocolate.
Line the bottom and side of the cake tin with paper (you can use paper). Line the sides higher than the tin. Heat chocolate and butter in a microwave to melt. Put together the A) ingredients and sift twice. Preheat the oven to 170°C.
Put the egg yolks in a bowl and add granulated sugar. Put the bowl over a bain-marie of about 50°C. Whisk until pale and fluffy. Add milk and brandy and stir well.
Add the melted chocolate and butter and mix well. After mixing evenly, leave the bowl over a bain-marie to keep warm.
To make the meringue, put the egg whites in a bowl add 1 teaspoon of sugar. Whisk and add the rest of the sugar in 2-3 batches. Keep on whisking until stiff peaks form.
Take off the Step 3 bowl from the bain-marie. Add about 2 tablespoons of meringue to the chocolate mixture and mix with a balloon whisk.
Add the sifted dry ingredients and stir gently. Add the rest of the meringue in 2-3 batches. Fold in with a plastic spatula to avoid breaking the meringue.
It is important to fold in the meringue gently. Do not over mix.
Pour the batter into a cake tin. Put the leftover batter stuck on the sides of the bowl into small cups to bake because it doesn't have enough air to expand.
Drop the cake tin at a height to expel excess air. Flatten the surface with a spatula and put it in the 170°C oven. Bake for about 50 to 60 minutes.
While baking, the surface swells gradually and evenly first. After it has baked through, the middle swells a lot. Just after it's done, the surface evens out again. The surface tends to easily burn, so cover with foil if necessary.
After taking out from the oven, the cake sinks and cracks. After cooling, remove the cake from the tin and peel off the paper. Sprinkle plenty of powdered sugar on top through a tea strainer.
Story Behind this Recipe
Usually gateau au chocolat tends to be heavy or too moist inside. I wanted to make a more light-textured cake.
With less plain flour, you'll have a lighter cake. This has an almost crumbly texture. The key is keep the chocolate mixture warm over a bain marie before mixing with the meringue. It'll be easier to mix with the meringue and will make the batter lighter. I recommend using thick parchment paper for lining the cake tin to prevent the baked cake from sinking too much. Eat with whipped cream on the side.