Best Chocolate Cake Ever

Simple solutions can give you best results. Machines and gadgets are very important to many people, but honestly I really enjoy cooking when just a simple whisk, spoon or spatula just does the job. As is the case with the Chocolate Torta recipe from my TV series George Hirsch Lifestyle episode titled Old World Traditions. Enjoy.

Mix by hand and bake. Forty-five minutes later you’ll be savoring this Italian Pastry delight! 

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George's Chocolate Torta

Makes 12 servings 

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1 cup all-purpose flour

1/4 cup cornstarch

1-1/4 tsp. baking soda

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 cup unsweetened Dutch cocoa powder

1-1/4 cups granulated sugar

1 cup water

1/3 cup sweet butter, melted

1 egg, beaten

1 egg white, beaten into whole egg

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Confectioners sugar

Preheat oven to 325°. Lightly grease a 9-inch cake pan; set aside.

In small bowl, combine flour, cornstarch, baking soda and salt; set aside.

In large bowl, combine cocoa and granulated sugar until blended. With wire whisk, beat in water, then melted butter, egg, egg white and vanilla until smooth. Add flour mixture and beat until smooth. Pour into prepared pan.

Bake 45 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. On wire rack, cool for ten minutes in pan. With small spatula, loosen cake from sides of pan. Remove to a wire rack and cool completely. Place on plate and sprinkle with confectioners sugar and a dollop of fresh whip cream. To serve, cut into small wedges. 

Tip: This cake actually tastes get better when baked and aged one day in advance. When making ahead, allow to cool completly, then cover tightly in an air proof container or place baked chocolate torta back into cake pan and wrap the top with film. 

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Chocolate Torta, from George Hirsch Lifestyle TV Series

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George's Hot Chocolat Royale

Warning: Drinking hot cocoa in moderation may cause extreme amounts of happiness!


Chocolat L’Africain

In 1903, the Austrian confectioner Antoine Rumpelmayer established Angelina in France, named after his daughter-in-law. For over a century, this tearoom has been the reference for Parisian gourmet delicacies. Angelina became the meeting-place for the Parisian aristocracy. Proust, Coco Chanel and the major French fashion designers all crossed each others’ paths there.  It is the place to enjoy the famous Chocolat L’Africain (named after it’s Ivory Coast cacao beans) or aka, hot chocolate and the classical Mont Blanc gateau. With locations throughout France and three within Paris—the tea room close to the Louvre art museum, is a favorite venue of local Parisians and all chocolate lovers. Cafe Angelina's hot chocolate recipe is a highly kept national secret. I've offered you my recipe, which does come with a warning as it's no Swiss Miss.

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Good To Know:

Better tasting chocolate will contain at least 30-40% cacao. The percentage can be found on the label of all good quality chocolate.

George's Hot Chocolat Royale

Makes 4 small cups, or 2 large 

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1/2 cup whole milk

1/2 cup half and half

2 teaspoon confectioners’ sugar

6 ounces bittersweet or semisweet chocolate- 40% cocoa, finely chopped

2 ounces milk chocolate, - 40% cocoa, finely chopped

1/2 cup fresh whipped cream

Optional: serve with a touch of cognac or brandy

Heat half of the milk, half and half, and sugar over medium high heat with chocolates stirring until chocolates are melted. Whisk the remaining milk and half and half until warmed and chocolate is completely smooth. Remove the pot from heat.

Pour into pre heated cups/bowls. Serve with a side of fresh whipped cream and optional cognac. 

PARIS Locations:

Angelina Rivoli

Opening hours: every day from 9:00a.m. to 7:00 p.m.

Address: 226 rue de Rivoli, 75 001 Paris

Tel: +33 (0)1 42 60 82 00

Angelina Porte Maillot

Opening hours: every day from 9:00a.m. to 7:00 p.m.

Address: Palais des Congrès, 2 place de la Porte Maillot, 75 017 Paris

Tel: +33 (0)1 40 68 22 50

Angelina Louvre

Opening hours: every day from 9:00a.m. to 6:00 p.m. except on Tuesday

Adress: Musée du Louvre, Aile Richelieu, 75 001 Paris

Tel : +33 (0)1 49 27 93 31

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