Martjie Malan’s flourless chocolate cake

Dense and decadent! The perfect way to end a special dinner, plus it’s gluten-free.

Less than 45 minutes

Serves 8-10


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  • ⅘ cup (200g) unsalted butter + extra for greasing
  • 2 slabs (100g each) dark chocolate (preferably 70%), chopped
  • 6 large eggs, separated
  • ⅔ cup (80g) cocoa powder, sifted
  • Pinch fine salt
  • 1¼ cups (250g) castor sugar
  • Fresh berries and ice cream or whipped cream, for serving



  1. Preheat oven to 180ºC. Grease a 20cm loose-bottomed cake tin with a dab of butter and line with baking paper.
  2. Melt butter in a glass bowl over a pot of simmering water.
  3. Remove from heat, add chocolate and stir until melted (briefly return to heat if needed). Once smooth and glossy, allow to cool slightly.
  4. Add melted chocolate gradually to egg yolks in a separate bowl, stirring until well combined.
  5. Fold in 70g (½ cup + 2 tsp) cocoa and salt until well combined.
  6. Whisk egg whites for 1-2 minutes or until soft peaks form.
  7. Add sugar gradually, a tablespoon at a time, while whisking until stiff peaks form, about 7 minutes (mixture should be thick and glossy).
  8. Fold egg white gently into chocolate mixture until smooth.
  9. Pour batter into prepared cake tin.
  10. Bake for 35-40 minutes or until fine cracks appear on the crust and the cake is soft to touch.
  11. Cool completely in the cake tin.
  12. Unmould and dust with remaining cocoa powder.
  13. Serve with berries and ice cream or cream.


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