Friday, July 12, 2013

3-Ingredient Nutella Strawberry Cake

 I'm sorry for the absence. Really. Please let me explain. And then I promise I'll make it up to you with some really, really good cake.
   After my sweet 16, I had a couple of crazy weeks with tons of family here. During this time, my computer completely crashed. After a few days of having work done on it, I'm left with a completely clean slate, and a camera with a few pictures on it. The entire lineup of food pictures I had for a series of summery posts? Gone. So I curled up onto my couch for a little while. And then I got back into the kitchen to try to make up for my lost picture-taking time.
 I made this cake a few nights after my party, for a bunch of family members who were over at my house for dinner. It looked simple enough, it was naturally gluten-free, and, most importantly, it was a cake that required only two ingredients. A base of beaten eggs, followed by an insane amount of nutella. Sounds like a party to me.
    So of course I made it way more complicated than it had to be. When it came out of the oven, instead of just serving it as-is like a normal person, I decided to drizzle some more nutella on top. But it looked so chocolatey, I needed something to break the richness, so in came a crown of sliced strawberries. I also served it with some fresh, lightly sweetened whipped cream, but that's not really necessary.
     This cake was absolutely perfect for the crowd we had at my house. It's rich enough that a little slice will satisfy that chocolate craving, and I was impressed by how light it was made just by the eggs. Often when Nutella is used in baked goods, its flavor gets masked by all the other ingredients, but the short ingredients list for this recipe let the spread's flavor shine. My only regret? Learning that with eggs and nutella, I can have an entire delicious cake at my fingertips within the hour. Because that's an extremely dangerous skill to possess.
3-Ingredient Nutella Strawberry Cake
(adapted from Kirbie's Cravings)

8 large or extra large eggs
17 ounces Nutella (weigh this out on a scale), plus more for topping
1 pint fresh strawberries, sliced

Grease a 9 or 10 inch round springform pan. Then line with parchment paper on sides and on bottom. Preheat oven to 350F. Beat eggs on highest speed with stand mixer until about triple in volume, about 8 minutes. The egg consistency is the key to making this recipe work, so don't try to save time on this step.
Measure out 17 ounces of Nutella into a glass bowl. Microwave Nutella for about 20 seconds to make it more liquidy. Add in 1/3 of the egg mixture. Gently stir with a spatula in the same clockwise direction until all of the egg is mixed in and no streaks remain. Then add another 1/3 of egg mixture and fold again until no egg streaks remain. Pour in remaining third, making sure to scrape the foam that sticks to the mixing bowl into the batter, and stir until no streaks remain. Make sure to do this in 3 batches because otherwise the whipped eggs may lose too much of the air that has been whipped into them.
Pour batter into springform pan. Bake for 20-25 minutes until knife inserted in the center comes out clean. Let cake cool completely before removing from pan.
Warm about 1/4 cup of remaining Nutella briefly in the microwave. Drizzle over cooled cake. Top with strawberries, and serve slices with lightly sweetened whipped cream (optional).

*Note: This recipe makes quite a large cake. Feel free to halve it and bake it in a 6 or 7 inch springform pan.

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