Making desserts without gluten and dairy can be a challenge, but this is a terrific example of how simplicity can save the day. With only four ingredients in the cake and a simple dried fruit compote, you have a decadent and luxurious dessert. No one will miss the flour or cream.
14 oz dark (70% cocoa) chocolate, chopped
1/2 cup sugar
8 eggs. separated
2 1/2 cups ground hazelnuts (about 1 lb, shelled)
Preheat oven to 375 F
Roast hazelnuts lightly.
Cool and rub to remove the skins.
Place hazelnuts in a food processor and grind until quite fine.
Prepare an 8 inch springform pan by brushing with vegetable oil or nonstick spray
Press 1/2 cup of the ground hazelnuts into bottom to form a crust.
Place chopped chocolate in a medium bowl and place over a pot of hot water to melt.
In a separate bowl, whisk together egg yolks and sugar, beating until thick, pale, and sugar is dissolved.
Add the melted chocolate to the egg yolk mixture and stir until well combined.
Beat egg whites until stiff, and fold into chocolate mixture.
Add remaining 2 cups ground hazelnuts, stir well, and pour into prepared pan.
Bake for 45 minutes, until puffed uniformly, and firm to the touch.
Remove and place on a wire rack to cool.
Dried cherry compote
1 cup dried cherries
1 cup water
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cinnamon stick
Place all ingredients in a small saucepan, and bring up to a simmer.
Cover, reduce heat to medium low, and cook for 1/2 hour, until cherries start to soften.
Remove from heat and allow to cool.
Serve room temperature.