For more years than I care to admit, I’ve carried yellowing, smudged, brittle and torn recipe pages up and down the West coast, then to the Midwest – always tucked inside a bulging 3-ring recipe binder that is home to hundreds of other recipes I’ve collected over the years. Like old, worn, favorite toys scattered about in a child’s room, these recipes have been ripped from newspapers and magazines, scribbled on scraps and bits of paper, napkins, the backs of envelopes and, during those times I was organized, real recipe cards. Whenever I’m feeling nostalgic, I plop that 3-ring binder on the dining room table and pour over these old recipes until I find one that fits my mood as well as the occasion.

For many years, this dense, fudgy, chocolate cake was my ‘go-to’ holiday gift and was the very first cake I ever baked for The Professor; he had invited me to spend Christmas Eve with his family – as ‘friends’, of course – because we just didn’t ‘date.’ With Christmas music playing in the background, I stood in my small apartment kitchen, dressed in comfy sweats, stocking feet, hair pulled back into clips – first melting the chocolate and butter, then whipping eggs, baking soda and sour cream, then blending flour, psyllium husk and salt and finally easing the silky batter ever so slowly, into  a buttered and floured silver Bundt pan. Once the brownie-like cake is cooled, I ribbon the glaze across the top, watching it slide as if a slow moving avalanche of chocolatey-goodness; when the glaze finally ends its descent, the cake has a whimsical look of a fancy, frilly skirt or ballerina’s tutu.

I’m always somewhat adventurous in perusing new recipes and often try several new ones each month – but there’s something comforting about pulling out old friends like these to share with those you love.

I’ve adapted the original recipe to make it gluten-free wondering if it would still taste as good as remembered . . . I am happy to report that yes, indeed my favorite chocolate cake is still dense, still fudgy, still decadent, still brownie-like and still absolute heaven.

Even better, it’s still a certain Professor’s favorite.


  1. Pingback: Roundup: Gluten Free Cake Recipes - Violet/Meyer

  2. We had this for dessert last night and it was AMAZING!!

    • oh i am so, so happy you tried it and loved it as much as we do – thank you so much for taking the time to leave me a note!

  3. Debra this looks gorgeous! I am gluten free and also have found the conversion of old favorites like this to becoming GF often don’t change them in a negative way as I’ve often feared. I find the flour blend makes all the difference. Definitely bookmarking this!

  4. I relate on this recipe binder matter. I have written a post or two about it. It is so funny to me that when I see a recipe from a newspaper or magazine, I clip it, store and maybe just maybe I will get to making it. I have made a goal for myself to try these recipes from time to time, instead of sitting in the binder alone and waiting.
    As for this chocolate cake goes, well it is just singing to me, make me now please. The crumb looks perfect!

  5. Hey there,Debra. This recipe looks awesome! Because I am not accustomed to converting grams to cups, etc., I want to double check the measurements. 400 grams of sugar is 2 cups? 280 grams flour is approx. 1 1/2 cups? Thanks for helping out an old friend!!

    • hey Donna! you actually have them reversed: 2 cups AP flour, 1-1/2 cups sugar. i bake by weight using GF flours as they each weigh differently – but if you don’t have a scale, then use the standard measuring cup method. i love this cake so much – i hope you do too!

  6. i love listening to a new song everytime i visit your blog ….something i look forward to 🙂 your choice is always good !

  7. OH my – I am on my knees! So want a piece of this. Gluten free or not it looks too good to pass up. Like I said when I visit I’ll be coming around with a pitchfork!

  8. I have a three-ring binder, too. And I also love opening it, pages falling out, to find comfort in old favorites. I can picture you making this cake in the past, and I love that you are still making it now. It’s gorgeous!

  9. What a sweet story, and an even sweeter recipe! This chocolate cake looks so amazing — I can see why it’s an old favorite. I want to whip out my bundt pan and start baking at this late hour. Is there a substitute ingredient you can suggest for psyllium husk? Would appreciate knowing if there is. I will just die if I can’t bake this cake !

    • hi Betty Ann ~ you can substitute ground chia seeds or xantham gum for the psyllium husk – swap equal amounts and it should work fine. let me know how you do!

  10. I have never been let down by a flourless chocolate cake and your bundt looks pretty fantastic to me!

  11. Looks positively decadent!

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