I think we might as well start with the best part...the picture of this oh so yummy chocolate mousse cake. This is a very interesting recipe that we made for French Fridays with Dorie this week. You make the cake batter and then you cook 1/3rd of it. You then have multiple options, as this cake can be served cold, warm or baked and chilled. And, there are different cooking directions for each way to serve it. Dorie said her favorite way was baked and chilled, so that's the way I went. I'm going to have to try cold too (since you don't cook the second layer of batter in that version and I would guess it has a totally different taste.) With the baked and chilled version, after you bake the first 1/3rd of the batter and let it cool, you then add the rest of the batter and bake it again and then refrigerate it.
The cake turned out great, even though I still only have a 9" springform pan and the recipe called for an 8" (I just haven't been able to find an 8"). I decided to increase the recipe by 25% to make up for the bigger pan. The other little issue I had was my springform pan, without the bottom, is a slight bit warped. Since you cook this cake in the springform, without the bottom, some of the batter seeped out of the pan. It wasn't too much and didn't affect the taste of the cake. The cake had a deep, chocolate flavor, almost like a sophisticated brownie. The batter has espresso in it, so there is an undertone of coffee in the cake (which sometimes made me wonder if the cake was a tad bit burned on the bottom...until I finally realized it was the coffee flavor coming through). Served with vanilla whipped cream, it is definitely too good to pass up.
I must confess, that with all the options on how to make this cake...I read and reread the recipe about 20 times, trying to decide which version I would make. I finally went with what Dorie said was her favorite, but am looking forward to making the other versions too. When I have the right size, unwarped springform pan! Wondering what versions of the recipe my other fellow FFWD participants made? See them here.