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Happy Birthday to you…

Eggs On The Roof is one year old today.

When I started writing and photographing Eggs On The Roof, I got used to variations on a single, puzzled question: but what’s it for? The answer to start with was very simple – a slightly apologetic it’s for me. I wanted to write about food, books I’d read, paintings I’d seen and the funny things that happened along the way. I couldn’t do that as a journalist and certainly not as part of the PhD I’m inching towards completing. But over the past year I’ve discovered that it’s not just for me after all. I’ve made some wonderful friends through Eggs On The Roof. So this birthday is a joint celebration. Happy Birthday to Eggs On The Roof and happy first birthday to you too.

Any birthday needs celebrating, preferably with cake. And this cake is a good one. It’s light and flour-less and just as importantly, it’s quick and extremely easy to make. Which means you have more time left to celebrate.

Chocolate Mousse Cake With a Hint of Crystallised Ginger and a Whole Lot of Whipped Cream

50g best dark chocolate, minimum 70% cocoa solids

50g best milk chocolate

100g Green and Black‘s dark chocolate with ginger, which is 60% cocoa solids. If you can’t get this, use 100g of best dark chocolate and add around a teaspoon of crystallised ginger, minced very finely. Just remember that you need a total of 200g of chocolate for this recipe.

150g slightly salted butter

9 medium eggs separated

6 tablespoons caster sugar

250 ml heavy or double cream, whipped until soft peaks form

Preheat the oven to 175 degrees C. Butter two 18 cm cake tins and line with baking parchment.

Melt the chocolate and butter in a bowl over a pan of simmering water – add the ginger too, if using. While the chocolate melts, separate the egg yolks and whites into two bowls. Stir the yolks with a fork and whisk the egg whites until they form stiff peaks. Whisk the sugar into the whites. Once the chocolate has melted fully, allow it to cool for a few minutes and then mix in the eggs yolks. Gently fold in the egg whites, separate the mixture between the two cake tins and bake in the oven for around 20 minutes. Remove from the tins, allow to cool and then sandwich the two halves together with whipped cream. As the two halves cool they will sink slightly and wrinkle like a Saint Bernard’s forehead. If you want a smooth top to your cake, make sure that you turn the top layer upside down.


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