Gâteau d’Alice (gâteau au chocolat amer)

Today I’m sharing a recipe for a very special bittersweet chocolate cake that was given to me by Alice, the daughter of family friends, while we were visiting them in France.  I’m sharing this recipe in French, just the way it was given to me..mostly because the cake will turn out very close to the way we enjoyed it after dinner with our friends at their home in Saint Malo, but also because it’s a French cake and belongs in French.  Trust me … both using a kitchen scale to weigh out the ingredients and following the exact directions on both baking temperature and time  in the oven will give you the best results when making this rich, slightly melted in the center, and intensely chocolate French style cake.

We went to France with a group of friends several years ago and the first stop on our trip was a visit to see friends in Saint Malo and enjoy a wonderful meal in their home.  Several years later I still think about the evening, the friendships, conversations and the wonderful meal we shared.  Our friends in Saint Malo were winemakers from Chablis as well as accomplished home cooks.  They served oysters, lobsters, and salt marsh lamb, a specialty from Normandy where they lived. We enjoyed this meal with our friends in the French style, with plenty of conversation and good wine late into the night.  Lucky us, our French friends shared wines from their cellar in honor of our group coming all the way from California for a long distance visit, as we know that are too few and far in between.

One of the culinary standouts from that evening was the gâteau au chocolat amer that Alice had made earlier in the day.  We were all in heaven over this chocolate cake and when I asked for the recipe, Alice very generously wrote it out on a small slip of paper which I kept and have used over the years for our special family dinners.  I’ve never translated this recipe from the original-it’s so simple and has so few ingredients I never felt the need to change one thing about it.

A few tips are to make sure the eggs are at room temperature and the beaten egg whites should be firm but not too stiff.  The cake’s center will jiggle and not look done when it’s time to remove it from the oven.  After cooling the cake on a rack plus a few hours in the fridge it will be firm enough to slice and serve.

For my French speaking friends-please excuse any mistakes with grammar or spelling in the recipe and for my English speaking friends -please use an english translator to read the recipe, thanks!

Gâteau d'Alice (gâteau au chocolat amer)

Yield: pour 10 personnes


  • 200 g de chocolat amer
  • 250 g de beurre
  • 200 g de sucre
  • 5 oeufs
  • 75 g de farine
  • 1 bonne pincée de sel


  1. Préchauffer le four à 210 C (400F).
  2. Beurrer un moule à cake de 25cm x 10cm.
  3. Séparer les jaunes des blancs.
  4. Faire fondre le chocolat avec le beurre au bain-marie.
  5. Mélanger les jaunes et le sucre dans un bol de taille moyenne. Et ensuite ajouter la farine et le sel.
  6. Monter les blancs d'oeufs en neige (batteur électrique).
  7. Verser le chocolat-beurre fondu sur le mélange jaunes-sucre-farine en remuant jusqu'a ce que ce soit bien lisse.
  8. Ajouter les blanc d'oeufs en neige.
  9. Verser le tout dans le moule.
  10. Faire cuire 20 minutes au four.
  11. Laisser refroidir dans le moule puis l'envelopper dans un film et du papier d'aluminium.
  12. Réfrigérer jusqu'a ce que le gâteau ait durci (environ 2 heures).
  13. Découper des parts et server avec la crème fouettée.
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  1. This cake looks divine, Patty! I love the center – it looks slightly molten! :)

  2. Turns out my french is still acceptable to read a recipe, lol. I can say this is they type of cake I would choose first, deep, dark and very chocolaty. Gorgeous Patty!

  3. What great memories to have from a night with friends. This cake look heavenly!

  4. I love everything about this post! From the glorious chocolate to the French recipe, just outstanding!

  5. That gooey center is killing me!

  6. Oh Patty, this looks melt-in-your-mouth delicious and I love your recollections of such a lovely day!

  7. What a special cake Patty! Love that it made its way all the way from France. I just wish I had a slice right now. This is a must make for my next dinner party or just for hubby!

  8. That moist center is soooo tempting!! Want!!!

  9. This is every chocoholics dream – and you’ve captured the texture of the cake in your images so beautifully! I’m going to have to run the recipe through a translator for sure (so hungry for this cake, now!)

  10. How lovely to have a recipe written in French! And the gateau looks absolutely wonderful. What a great time you must have had with your friends.

  11. Nice post Patty…and the cake looks gorgeous, I love the creamy texture in the middle…yum!
    Have a great weekend ahead :D

  12. So moist and chocolaty looking…totally decadent!! Love the creamy middle…drooling! I am bookmarking this one!

  13. This Gâteau d’Alice sounds like a decadent treat for chocolate lovers, which is right up my alley! :P Can’t wait to try it out.

  14. This looks so fudgy – the hallmark of a great chocolate dessert

  15. This cake looks so irresistible, Patty! Almost like a molten chocolate loaf…

  16. Who doesn’t love a French recipe?! I love anything French, so this works for me. Thanks for sharing this wonderful recipe. Will be filing it in my “to-bake” list!

  17. I bet you had a wonderful time with your friends. I loved Saint Malo when I was there a few years ago. That cake looks so moist and delicious.

  18. Lora @cakeduchess says:

    Oh, Patty-I love this post and adore this recipe. That center looks like something I’d love to dive in with a big fork and get lost in. Fabulous!!

  19. OMG look at how moist and chocolaty this looks! WOW! Lovely recipe and how fun that it’s in french.

  20. I love how fudgy in the middle. I want to put good vanilla ice cream on top and eat it… And I wish how to read French! I can’t even remember Spanish I learned in college for 2 years. It must be nice to be able to speak when traveling in France!

  21. Wow, the chocolate fudgey, gooeyness is calling my name. I can picture a nice warm piece with scoop of vanilla bean ice cream and in France…dreamy! Love that you shared it in French and it doesn’t seem to be too many ingredients, so I must try soon.

  22. This is my kind of cake. One of my recent recipes was based on a French one I found online and I tried to keep the measurements in French, too, because I was afraid it would lose its “French-ness”. Love this!

  23. My mouth is watering just looking at the fudgy middle of this cake – Yum!

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