Triple Chocolate Easter Egg Nest Cake is gluten-free and dairy-free, intensely chocolaty and delicious. With the addition of the pretty chocolate nest filled with Easter eggs, it can make your Easter dessert table so beautiful!
“Pull up a chair. Take a taste. Come join us. Life is so endlessly delicious.”
― Ruth Reichl
The start of this new year has surely been blessed with friends, good food, laughter, and companionship. We cannot thank enough Food Bloggers of Canada and its community for giving us the opportunity to meet incredible people and develop with some of them what can be called a “foodie” friendship. We share the same interest in food and it’s enlivening to share ideas with each one of them, teaching and learning mutually. Moreover, whenever we meet, there is always good food involved.
We love to entertain, and if we lived in a bigger place, we’d invite more than a couple at a time over to our place. Last Sunday we had the pleasure to invite Lillian and Dan from the blog Beyond Umami. They are a lovely couple and we talked endlessly about food, props, photo and video editing (they’re ahead of us!), while eating one dish after another, in true Italian fashion, where conversing, cooking, changing plates, serving, drinking and eating all happens to make our guests feel at home and welcomed. We shared the table for a Sunday meal that lasted good 3 hours and fused lunch and afternoon tea together when this Triple Chocolate Easter Egg Nest Cake was served alongside one of Loreto’s amazing tea concoctions.
Triple Chocolate Easter Egg Nest Cake, a graceful cake to celebrate friendship.
Easter is approaching and I wanted a dessert that was delicious and beautiful to serve, but that also followed our guests’ food sensitivity. Baking a Chocolate Cake was a no brainer, you all know my chocolate “addiction”, but the cake had to be gluten free. The inspiration for such a pretty Easter cake did not come from my past, my background, my roots. Never eaten anything like that at an Italian Easter table. What we usually had for dessert, was the store bought colomba (the dove-shaped Easter cake), and some homemade sweets that my aunts baked for us, delicious, but mostly a sweet bread with a rustic country look. The chocolate cake is adapted from a recipe I found in Giulia –Juls’ Kitchen– cookbook, that I adapted to a gluten-free, orange flavored bundt cake. The original recipe calls for an equal amount of almond flour and spelt flour, it has a mandarin flavor, and is not baked in a bundt cake pan. As most Italian cakes, it is adorned only with a dusting of icing sugar, but Easter and our friends deserved a much prettier dress than icing sugar, the kind of dress you save for a special occasion. So I kept browsing the internet for inspiration, and when I saw on this site a chocolate cake with a beautiful nest towering on top, I knew I had found the perfect accessory to my Easter cake. As for the cake itself, though, I thought the nest would be nicer sitting on the hollow of a bundt cake, and in the end, I opted again for a less refined look (and more chocolate), lol. It may not be perfect and refined, it looks still a bit messy in parts, but with Loreto we had fun making it and in the end loved the outcome.
Triple chocolate means: the Valhrona dark chocolate I melted and folded into the batter; the dark chocolate ganache (again, Valhrona) I spread on the cake; and the Callebaut’s chocolate shavings to top it all (we could only find the milk chocolate shavings, but if you want it completely dairy-free try and find the dark chocolate ones). As a different option, if you think a Triple Chocolate Cake is an attack to your waistline or your arteries, you can keep the dark chocolate in the cake, and spread some jam on top just to allow the shavings to stick. Or you can make a simple chocolate cake (bundt or not) and put the nest on top with no ganache and no shavings. Do as you most please. The result will be fantastic in any case because you made it!
As for the nest, it might look complicated but it is actually the easiest part. You will need a bowl to melt the dark chocolate in a bain-marie (and if we were able to eat the nest it would have made this cake a quadruple chocolate cake, lol), break the vermicelli noodles a bit, and coat them in the chocolate. Move the coated vermicelli to another medium size bowl lined in plastic, shape them in a nest and put a smaller heavier bowl on top to keep the shape while you leave it in the fridge to solidify. When out of the fridge remove the nest from the plastic (or in my case ask your husband to do it for fear of breaking it 😉 ), then place it on the bundt cake and fill with the candied colorful mini eggs. If you want to make the nest edible, you can cook the vermicelli noodles cool them then follow the same procedure. Our friends Lillian and Dan said in their culture they even deep fry the noodles. Many options for a wonderful result.
To break that triple chocolate intensity and add a velvety, fresh, and tangy note, Loreto made a raspberry purée. Needless to say, it married the overall flavors beautifully. The cake with its delicate textures from the interior luxuriously crumbly, to that dark chocolate armor that binds the shavings to the surface of this marvelous creation. The flavors rich with the Valrhona chocolate coming through in each bite slightly sweetened with the Callebaut milk chocolate shaving. The amazing thing is that it is crumbly, but as soon as it hits your tongue it just melts and is so velvety, the raspberry puree sparks the chocolate flavor with some freshness and tartness, in such a balanced way, truly amazing.
We and our friends, scraped the plate trying to get every last bit of chocolate and the last bit of the raspberry purée, and when we finally put our forks down we were all so satisfied with the lunch and the company, hosting beautiful smiles.
Happy Easter or, as we say in Italy, “Buona Pasqua“! Be good to your friends and family.
Song of the day: “We’re going to be friends”, The White Stripes.Print
Recipe for the cake adapted from the cookbook “Cucina da Chef con Ingredienti Low cost” by Giulia Scarpaleggia. Idea for the nest adapted from Chew Town.
Triple Chocolate Cake:
- 3 medium eggs, organic, free range, at room temperature
- 120 g light brown sugar
- 120 g dark chocolate (we used Valrhona), melted
- 1 orange, juice and zest
- 50 g extra virgin olive oil
- 1/4 tsp orange blossom extract (optional)
- 1/4 tsp pure vanilla extract
- 100 g (1 cup) almond flour
- 60 g (1/2 cup) brown rice flour
- 40 g (1/3 cup) coconut flour
- 8 g (2 tsp) baking powder
- pinch salt
- 100 g dark chocolate (we used Valrhona)
- 20 g unsalted butter
- 80 g chocolate shavings (milk or dark, we used Callebaut’s milk chocolate shavings)
- 60 g dark chocolate
- 20 g vermicelli noodles
- a packet of small Easter eggs
- 1/2 cup fresh raspberries
- 1 Tbsp maple syrup
- Squeeze of fresh lemon juice
- 1 tsp lemon zest
- Preheat the oven to 350° F (180°C). Butter and flour a bundt pan.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer or in a bowl using a hand held mixer, beat the eggs and sugar until light and foamy.
- Melt the dark chocolate in a bain-marie, then add the e.v.o. oil, the orange juice and zest, and extracts.
- Add the liquids to the egg mixture.
- Sift the flours, baking powder, and salt. Add slowly to the wet mixture, mixing lightly with a spatula.
- Pour the batter in the prepared bundt pan and bake in the preheated oven for about 25 minutes.
- To make the ganache, melt the butter and chocolate together in a bain-marie (water bath), stirring until completely combined. Spread on the cake. Let cool a bit, then sprinkle the chocolate shavings on top.
- To make the nest, melt the chocolate in a bain-marie (water bath), break up roughly the vermicelli noodles in the melted chocolate and mix with two forks till well coated. Transfer the chocolate coated noodles into a bowl lined with plastic wrap. Place a heavier smaller bowl on top of the noodles and place in the fridge to harden (at least 5/10 minutes).
- Remove the nest from the fridge, and take it out of the bowl mold. Place it on top of the bundt cake and fill it with the chocolate eggs.
- Serve a slice of the cake with some drops of raspberry puree.
- Enjoy and Happy Easter!
The texture of the gluten free triple chocolate cake is dense but soft and melt in your mouth, it keeps at room temperature in a domed cake stand for few days. If you want it not gluten-free, you can substitute the brown rice and coconut flour with 100 g of spelt flour.
Unfortunately, the nest is inedible, due to the uncooked vermicelli noodles, it is only for decoration.
- Serving Size: 10-12 servings
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