Ingredients

1 ? sticks (12 tablespoons) unsalted butter, softened
� cup sugar
7 ounces semisweet chocolate, melted and cool
8 large eggs, separated
1 ? cups (about 5-6 ounces) ground almonds
� cup all-purpose flour
Confectioners’ sugar, for finishing

Directions

1. Set rack in the middle of oven and preheat to 350? F. Butter a 10 inch round cake pan, 2 inches deep and line with a disk of parchment or wax paper.
2. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat together butter and � cup of the sugar until soft and light, about 2 or 3 minutes. Stop the mixer and add the chocolate, beating again until the mixture is smooth. Beat in the egg yolks, one at a time, beating smooth after each addition. Turn the mixer off and use a large rubber spatula to stir in the almonds and flour.
3. Pour the egg whites into a clean, dry mixer bowl and whip them by machine with the whisk attachment on medium speed until they are white and opaque and beginning to hold their shape.
4. Whip in the remaining sugar about a tablespoon at a time, continuing to whip the egg whites until they hold a soft, glossy peak. Stir about a quarter of the egg whites into the batter to lighten it, then use a large rubber spatula to fold in the remaining egg whites.
5. Scrape the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top. Bake the cake until it is firm, about 35-40 minutes, or until an inserted toothpick or knife comes out clean.
6. Invert the cake to a rack and remove the pan. Immediately re-invert to another rack so that the cake cools right-side-up. If the cake sinks slightly in the center as it cools, trim away the sides before inverting the cake to a platter.
7. Dust the cake with the confectioners’ sugar before serving.

Though chocolate cakes are not a typical Italian dessert, Nick Malgieri says that this one is seen in all the elegant pastry shops in Naples. Make sure the cake pans are evenly buttered with soft, not melted, butter to give a thicker coating and allow for an easier unmolding of the cakes.

Capri Cake
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