Healthy-ish Chocolate Olive Oil Torte

This recipe all started with a mistake. Having used my heavy cream to make cultured butter, I decided I would try this healthier version of chocolate mousse made with chocolate and water. Turns out, the chocolate I had wasn’t quite right, which meant that I never did get it to hold the air I was so desperately beating into it. Having made a big bowl of chocolate-y water, I thought I might use it to make cake. After glancing through an old Betty Crocker cookbook (the same one my mom gave me when I moved away from home 11 years ago), I decided I would try my hand at chocolate torte. It’s much easier than I thought it would be!

I decided I would make a version that had the option to forgo added sugar, possibly making the recipe a bit healthier and more accesible to people who have to watch their sugar intake. Olive oil in/on chocolate desserts is something I’ve been seeing more of lately, and since I love the combination I used it here too. Adding olive oil in lieu of melted butter probably helps with the healthy-ish thing (although it’s still chocolate dessert, so it’s not as good for you as, say, a pile of veggies). It’s incredibly rich and decadent, probably more so because there is not much sugar in it to dampen the rich chocolate flavor. You can use whatever type of dark chocolate you would like (I used 60% cocoa).

Chocolate Olive Oil Torte

1 c water
1 c + 1 tbsp chocolate (either chips or a bar that’s been broken into small pieces)
4 eggs, separated
pinch sea salt
2 tbsp vanilla sugar (optional)
1/3 c extra virgin olive oil (use the good quality stuff here), plus extra for drizzling
vegetable oil (or olive oil), for the pan
3/4 c flour

-Preheat oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit.
-Oil a 9″ round pan, line the whole thing with a piece of parchment paper, and rub the parchment paper in oil.
-Pour water into a small saucepan over medium heat; add chocolate pieces.
-Stir until just melted.
-Remove from heat and pour into a mixing bowl. Add egg yolks, salt, sugar (if you want), olive oil, and flour.
-Mix until combined and smooth. Set aside.
-Add egg whites to another mixing bowl.
-Beat the egg whites until soft peaks form.
-Fold the egg whites into the batter until combined.
-Pour the batter into the lined pan.
-Bake for about 25 minutes or until cooked through. Since it’s a torte, a toothpick might not come out completely clean when you test it, but you do want to make sure there’s no liquid batter still in the middle.
-Let cool in the pan for about 20 minutes.
-Invert the pan onto a plate and remove.
-Sprinkle the cake with powdered sugar (if desired).
-To serve, drizzle with homemade chocolate syrup and olive oil, and sprinkle with a little sea salt.

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