This rich and luxurious flourless chestnut-and-chocolate torte is flavored with bourbon and topped with a swirl of sweetened chestnut puree. It's the perfect end to a wintertime holiday meal.
Why this recipe works:
- The mild flavor of chestnut in the chocolate torte is enhanced with bourbon.
- Swirls of chestnut purée on top add even more chestnut flavor.
- Chopped nuts in the torte add crunch.
Notes:A potato ricer creates the spaghetti-like strands of chestnut purée to top the torte. Adjust the consistency of the purée so that you can easily push the purée through the ricer with the strands still able to hold their shape.
- Yield:Makes one 9-inch cake
- Active time: 30 minutes
- Total time:5 hours
- 10 tablespoons (5 ounces) unsalted butter, softened, divided
- 2/3 cup (4 2/3 ounce) plus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar, divided
- 12 ounces (60 %) bittersweet chocolate, chopped
- 3/4 cup heavy cream, divided
- 2 (15-ounce) cans chestnut purée, divided
- 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon bourbon, divided
- 5 large eggs
- 1/2 cup hazelnuts, lightly toasted, finely chopped
- 8 tablespoons confectioner's sugar, divided
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Adjust oven rack to middle position and preheat oven to 350°F. Coat bottom and sides a 9-inch springform pan with 2 tablespoons butter. Evenly sprinkle 2 tablespoons granulated sugar into pan to coat.
Heat chocolate and 1/2 cup cream in heatproof bowl over barely simmering water until smooth. Keep warm. Mash 1 can chestnut purée in large bowl with remaining 8 tablespoons butter and 1 tablespoon bourbon until creamy; set aside.
In stand-mixer bowl fitted with whisk attachment, beat eggs and remaining 2/3 cup sugar at high speed until light, creamy, and doubled in volume, about 5 minutes.
Stir chocolate mixture into chestnut mixture until smooth. Fold in 1/3 of egg mixture into chocolate-chestnut mixture to lighten. Gently fold in remaining egg mixture in 2 batches, folding gently until no streaks remain. Fold in nuts.
Pour batter into prepared pan and bake until edges are puffed and center is just set, but slightly wobbly, about 35 minutes. Transfer pan to cooling rack to cool, and then chill until set, about 4 hours.
Using mixer fitted with paddle, beat remaining can of chestnut purée with 6 tablespoons confectioners sugar until no lumps remain. Slowly mix in remaining 1/4 cup cream, remaining 1 teaspoon bourbon, and vanilla until combined. Adjust sweetness to taste, and then adjust consistency of chestnut purée with small amounts of water until a paste forms that easily presses through a potato ricer (see note).
Remove torte from pan and place on serving plate. Press chestnut purée through the potato ricer into strands on top of torte in a circular motion. Dust with remaining 2 tablespoons confectioners' sugar and serve cold (for a more dense texture) or at room temperature (for a more mousse-like texture).