Recipe from the Houstonian Hotel, Club & Spa, Houston.

Pan Preparation

1 nine-inch heart-shaped cake pan
parchment paper
1 teaspoon unsalted butter, softened
1 1/2 tablespoons high-quality cocoa powder

Coat sides and bottom of pan with softened butter. Then place a parchment liner on bottom of pan and butter it too. Sprinkle with cocoa powder, knock out excess, and chill until needed.


4 ounces sliced blanched almonds
6 ounces high-quality semisweet chocolate, broken in pieces
3/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
3/4 cup sugar
6 eggs, separated
4 tablespoons high-quality cocoa powder

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Grind almonds in a grinder or food processor to a fine powder. Melt chocolate in a double boiler, stir until smooth, and set aside to cool slightly. In a large mixing bowl cream together butter and sugar until fluffy, then beat in egg yolks. Stir in ground almonds and cocoa powder, then slowly beat in melted chocolate.

In a medium mixing bowl beat egg whites with a pinch of salt until firm—almost stiff—but not dry. Stir in about 1/4 of the egg whites to lighten the chocolate mixture, then quickly fold in remainder.

Pour batter into chilled pan and put in oven. Immediately turn down heat to 350 degrees and bake until the top springs back when touched, about 40 minutes. Let stand 20 minutes, then carefully invert onto a plate and peel off parchment. Set upright on a rack to cool.

Chocolate Topping

6 ounces high-quality semisweet chocolate, broken into pieces
1/2 cup heavy cream, removed from refrigerator and allowed to warm a bit
1/2 pint raspberries
4 sprigs mint

Melt chocolate in a double boiler and stir in cream until smooth and pourable. Pour topping on cake in one motion, smoothing lightly with a knife. Garnish with raspberries and mint. Store covered at room temperature. Serves 8 to 10.