Rose Levy Beranbaum's Chocolate Oblivion Truffle Torte

February 11, 2016

Test Kitchen-Approved

Author Notes:

Note: If you want to see lots of questions answered by Beranbaum herself, head to the original article here. This flourless chocolate torte is a better and purer vehicle for chocolate than chocolate itself (scientifically speaking).

It's made from just 3 ingredients: chocolate, butter, eggs. It takes less time to mix together than your average cookie, and it only bakes for 15 minutes.
Beranbaum's recipes are famously precise, but, as I found out, it's not because there's only one way to get them right. It's because she tests them until she finds the most proven path to making them the best that they can be. Adapted very slightly from The Cake Bible (William Morrow, 1988).

Genius Recipes

Makes: one 8-inch torte, serves many
Prep time: 3 hrs
Cook time: 15 min


  • 1 pound (454 grams) bittersweet chocolate (fine quality that you love eating, no higher than 62%)
  • 1/2 pound (2 sticks, or 227 grams) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 6 large eggs (300 grams, out of the shell), room temperature if possible
  • Equipment: One 8-inch spring form pan at least 2 1/2 inches high, buttered, and bottom lined with buttered parchment; outside of pan wrapped with a double layer of heavy-duty foil. One 10-inch cake pan or roasting pan to serve as a water bath
In This Recipe


  1. Heat the oven to 425°F.
  2. In a large heat-proof bowl set over a pan of hot, not simmering water (do not allow the bottom of the bowl to touch the water) place the chocolate and butter and allow it to stand, stirring occasionally, until smooth and melted. (You can also use a microwave on higher power, stirring every 20 seconds.)
  3. In a large mixer bowl, set over a pan of simmering water, heat the eggs, stirring constantly with a wire whisk, until just warm to the touch. Immediately remove the bowl to the stand mixer and with the whisk attachment on high speed, beat about 5 minutes, until triple in volume and the eggs are billowy and lighter in color. (If using a handheld electric mixer, beat the eggs over simmering water until they are hot. Then remove them from the heat and beat for about 5 minutes or until cold.)
  4. Use as large wire whisk or rubber spatula to fold half the eggs into the chocolate mixture until almost evenly incorporated. Fold in the remaining eggs until almost no streaks remain. Use a rubber spatula to finish folding, scraping up the mixture from the bottom to ensure that all the heavier chocolate mixture gets incorporated.
  5. Scrape the mixture into the prepared pan and set it in the larger pan. Place it in the oven and surround it with 1 inch of hot water. Bake for 5 minutes. Cover it loosely with a sheet of buttered foil and bake another 10 minutes. (It will wobble when moved.) Remove the cake pan from the water bath and allow it to cool for about 45 minutes. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate it until very firm, at least 3 hours.
  6. Unmold the cake: Have ready a serving plate that has at least an 8-inch flat center portion and an 8-inch or large flat loose bottom of a tart pan or plate, covered with greased plastic wrap.
  7. Use a torch, hair drier, or a hot damp towel to wipe the sides of the pan.
  8. Run a thin metal spatula around the sides of the torte and release the sides of the springform pan. Place the plastic-wrapped plate on top and invert the torte onto it. Heat the bottom of the pan and remove it. Peel off the parchment and reinvert the torte onto the serving plate.
  9. Serve: It is most moussey and delicious at room temperature. Cut the torte, using a thin-bladed knife dipped in hot water between each slice. Accompany with raspberry sauce and fresh raspberries and whipped cream if desired.

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Reviews (57) Questions (3)

57 Reviews

Ehrin P. January 26, 2019
This recipe is insufficient. It does not give you the temperature at which the “hot” water bath should be prior to placing this carefully created delicacy into your oven. I caught this when I pulled it out of the oven and it was soup. Bumped oven up to 500 and gave it another 5 minutes. Follow your instincts.
draya3 January 27, 2019
I've made this several times and have always used very hot tap water and never had a problem. As she says in the recipe, it firms up in the fridge.
Pam December 1, 2018
This is probably a little blasphemous but I just gotta ask..could this be made in Instant Pot?
Rose L. November 2, 2018
i'm still on book tour for "rose's baking basics" but Kristen sent me this link and i just want to tell you all how much i appreciate your comments! <br />love, rose
Amy November 1, 2018
In response to storage questions: in the original recipe (Cake Bible, p. 84-85), it is not advised to freeze the cake, as it will change the texture. R.L.B. recommends storing up to 2 weeks refrigerated.
Mary T. November 1, 2018
I purchased "The Cake Bible" in 1999. I've been making the torte at least twice a year ever since. On the days when my cake results are cosmetically challenged, I make a nice, shiny chocolate glaze to cover a multitude of sins. A crown of fresh raspberries doesn't hurt, either! It was this book that led to my fascination with all things Food Science; now friends call me when they have a question about cooking (especially baking). When I don't have the answer at my fingertips, I turn to my collection of reference books (Yes, it is possible to cook without the web). My favorite authors are Beranbaum, McGee, Child, and a host of others.
X March 14, 2018
Served it with strawberry sauce, a fresh strawberry cut into a rose for each serving, whipped cream, and a few mint sprigs. Looked good, tasted great.
Peggy G. March 14, 2018
Recipe Please for incredible raspberry sauce that is in The Cake Bible by Rose Levy Beranbaum?
Rachel H. March 14, 2018
Yes! By memory on p 337. Enjoy 😊 it really is the perfect combinatio. Oh, and whipped cream too of course. I made this again in the weekend and people were in raptures...someone referred to it as ineffable!
Susy S. September 4, 2018
Peggy, here's the link to the Raspberry Sauce:<br />
Rachel H. February 26, 2018
I made this amazing cake and also the incredible raspberry sauce that is in The Cake Bible by Rose Levy Beranbaum. Completely amazing. I would encourage anyone to try the making the cake and take the time to undertake all the steps exactly as described. It’s definitely worth every minute.
Camila P. February 18, 2018
The instructions for this recipe say to place the mixture into the prepared pan but there are no directions on how to prepare the pan. Parchment paper? Butter? This isn't the first recipe I've found on this site that omits this information or leaves it for the end of the recipe.
Camila P. February 18, 2018
Oops, seems I can't edit this, but I just found the instructions. >_<
Steph A. December 31, 2017
I made this for Christmas and I was so good! I was worried since I only had cocoa powder available, so I had to make a sweetened cocoa paste first. I did a 1/2 batch in a 6” cheesecake pan. It was amazing! I will definitely make again
Margaret January 25, 2019
Will you please give directions on the amounts used when substituting with cocoa powder? Thanks!
Steph A. January 25, 2019
I can’t remember exactly, as it was so long ago when I made this. But I’m also certain I looked up a recipe on how to make chocolate from cocoa powder like this one:<br /><br /><br />I think as long as you are able to temper the chocolate sauce/paste and get all the lumps out, it should turn out great!
Steph A. December 31, 2017
I made this for Christmas and I was so good! I was worried since I only had cocoa powder available, so I had to make a sweetened cocoa paste first. I did a 1/2 batch in a 6” cheesecake pan. It was amazing! I will definitely make again
Margaret January 25, 2019
Will you please give directions on the amounts used when substituting with cocoa powder? Thanks!
draya3 December 29, 2017
I can only echo what others have said. This is definitely the best thing I have ever baked! LOVED IT!
Susan B. September 16, 2017
OMG, I've made this torte several times now.... I want to make it 1001 more times. It's worth every drop of sweat. One friend said... " That's the best thing you'll ever put in your mouth " <br />This is the cake I make ONLY for people I love . Not that's it's hard to make, or expensive or anything else. It's just so good and so special.<br />Thank you Miss Rose Levy Berenbaum.
Tiffany C. November 16, 2017
Susan B. March 21, 2017
Spectacular !!!!
Auntie L. February 9, 2017
If there are leftovers - do they need to be kept in the refrigerator?
Susan B. May 26, 2017
Leftovers ??? Hahahaha
Tiffany C. November 16, 2017
Courtney C. December 28, 2016
This was so decadent. I loved it. Not difficult to make either.
Sharon October 21, 2016
I would love to make this for Thanksgiving. Any thoughts on freezing it?
lynda September 28, 2016
How long will it keep in the fridge / freezer?
Abbey B. May 10, 2016
I saw this in an article of good desserts to freeze. Any instructions on how best to freeze it and how long it will keep frozen?
Melanie March 26, 2016
I have been making this cake at least yearly (at Christmas) since The Cake Bible was published. One of my standbys & it is always, always a winner, especially because Rose is so very precise. That cookbook has never failed me. This cake, served at room temperature, it is completely decadent! I love it with fresh raspberries and slightly sweetened whipped cream. So happy to see this recipe in Food52!