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Chocolate Peanut Torte

From Chocolate Cake: 150 Recipes From Simple to Sublime

6 ounces semisweet chocolate, finely chopped
1-1/2 sticks (6 ounces) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
1 cup (3.5 ounces) roasted unsalted peanuts
1 tablespoon cornstarch
2 teaspoon ground pure ancho chile powder
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
5 large eggs, separated
1/4 teaspoon salt
14 tablespoons superfine sugar
Confectioners' sugar, for dusting.

Position a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 350ºF. Lightly butter a 9-by-2.5-inch springform pan. Melt the chocolate in a mixing bowl or in the top of a double boiler set over simmering water. Stir occasionally and, when melted, whisk in the butter, then set aside to cool.

In a food processor fitted with the steel blade, process the peanuts with the cornstarch until finely ground. Add the chile powder and cinnamon, and process until combined.

In a mixing bowl, with an electric mixer on medium speed, whip the egg whites with the salt until they form soft peaks. With the machine running, add the sugar, 2 tablespoons at a time, and beat until the egg whites are stiff and glossy

Break up the yolks with a fork and then fold them into the egg whites, using a rubber spatula. Fold in the chocolate and butter, and finally add the peanut-spice mixture.


Pour the batter into the prepared pan and set it on a baking sheet to catch the drips. Bake for 45 to 55 minutes; the interior should remain moist.

Remove the cake to a wire rack and cool to room temperature in the pan. As the cake is cooling, the crunchy meringue top crust will sink and crack, which is okay. When the cake is cool, slide a metal spatula or a table knife around the cake to loosen it from the sides of the pan. Open the springform lock and lift the cake up and out of the form. Serve the cake on its metal base and, just before serving, dust the top with confectioners' sugar.

Keep in the refrigerator, wrapped airtight in plastic, for up to 5 days; remove the cake 45 minutes before serving.

Yields 12 servings.


(Updated: 10/30/08 SN)

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