Savoy Style Chocolate Cake

Savoy Style Chocolate CakeFrench patisserie has in recent years become a fascinating world of design, trends, techniques and creativity without limits. Pastry chefs have become real designers, each of whom produces a collection of desserts that just by looking at them one can understand how much work is invested in each creation.

Savoy Style Chocolate CakeAlongside all the designs and trends, there are many classics, less fancy, less designed but with a lot of nostalgia and fascinating stories. The Paris-brest, the Saint-Honore, the Tarte Tatin, the Madeleines, are just some of the desserts and cakes for them even the most sophisticated chefs keep a warm corner in their hearts.

Savoy Style Chocolate CakeSavoy Style Chocolate CakeI recently spent a whole day with my friend Julien Alvarez who is considered one of the best pastry chefs in France. I have known Alvarez and most of our activities together were in recent years when he was the pastry chef of the prestigious Bristol Hotel. During these years I photographed with Alvarez a large variety of creations, each time I was amazed at his creativity, accuracy and the wonderful combinations of flavors he produces.

Savoy Style Chocolate CakeSavoy Style Chocolate CakeAfter 4 years at the luxury hotel, the talented chef decided to accept the position of “Ladurée” head pastry chef.

Savoy Style Chocolate CakeTo celebrate the new post, we decided to photograph some desserts that Alvarez created for “Ladurée” and in addition we made together a chocolate cake in the style of “Gateau de Savoie” (Savoy Cake) that can be very suitable for home baking. This cake is very classic, it’s not baked with sophisticated techniques and special decorations, but with a taste of childhood and a playful look.

Savoy Style Chocolate CakeLike many French desserts, quite a few stories have been associated with this cake, one of which describes the invention of the cake as early as the 14th century in the city of Chambery in the province of Savoy.

Savoy Style Chocolate CakeSavoy Style Chocolate CakeThe cake consists of very few ingredients and has whipped egg whites that give it an airy and light texture. But it was its form that stole the show, a form that represented the topography of the Duchy of Savoy, a chain of valleys and plains topped by the Imperial Crown.

Savoy Style Chocolate CakeSavoy Style Chocolate CakeOver the years the original recipe has undergone several changes like adding cinnamon, lemon zest and citrus blossom. This time we chose to make a Savoy Style Chocolate Cake, rich in brown sugar, cocoa and chocolate and of course whipped egg whites that give it a very delicate and airy texture. If you have a sweet tooth you can also add a milk chocolate and praline insert and garnish with chocolate ganache (optional).

Savoy Style Chocolate CakeDid you prepare the recipe and have any egg yolks left? Flan Chocolate is the recipe for you.

Savoy Style Chocolate CakeSavoy Style Chocolate Cake
22cm Savoy nordic ware pan

Milk Chocolate and Praliné insert (possible, prepare the night before):
130g milk chocolate, chopped
30g praliné cream

Pan Preparation:
very soft butter
50g Muscovado sugar mixed with 50g cocoa nibs

Chocolate Cake:
50g Canola oil
10g honey
50g dark chocolate, chopped
100g Muscovado sugar or brown sugar
85g all-purpose flour, sifted
15g cocoa powder, sifted
200g egg whites
90g white sugar
Pinch of salt

Chocolate Ganache (possible):
120g heavy whipping cream
100g dark chocolate (at least 70%cocoa), chopped

1. Milk Chocolate and Praliné insert (possible): Melt milk chocolate in a double boiler or the microwave. Add praliné cream and stir. Pour the mixture on a baking paper and flatten, place in the refrigerator. Using two rings/cookie cutters of different sizes, cut a ring with a narrower diameter from the mold and keep it refrigerated.
2. Chocolate Cake: Preheat the oven to 160C degrees. Grease the pan with butter, making sure all the folds are well covered. Sprinkle the mixture of sugar and cocoa nibs on the sides of the pan, remove leftovers.
3. In a small saucepan heat oil with honey, while the oil is hot, remove from the heat and pour over the chocolate, stirring until the chocolate is completely melted. Set aside to cool.
4. In a medium bowl mix Muscovado sugar, flour and cocoa.
5. In a mixer bowl beat the egg whites, white sugar and salt until a stable foam is obtained.
6. Gradually fold the dry ingredients mixture into the egg whites until a uniform mixture is obtained.
7. Gradually fold in the chocolate and oil mixture (it’s important that the mixture is not too hot but warm).
8. Pour half of the mixture into the pan, place the chocolate praliné ring on top of the mass and pour the rest of the mixture over it.
9. Bake for about 30 minutes until the cake is firm to the touch, remove from the oven and cool to room temperature.
10. Chocolate Ganache: In a medium pot, heat the cream until almost boiling. Remove from heat and strain the cream into the bowl with the chocolate. Let the mixture sit for 2 minutes before stirring. Using a spatula, slowly and gently begin to stir together the chocolate and cream. Stir slowly and carefully for a few minutes, until you have a glossy ganache. Pour on the cake and enjoy 🙂



  • 13 September 2021

    This cake is really great with my coffee and the cake feels very tasty. And I really like the background stories behind the recipe and the cake. Thank you so much for the recipe and story and the wonderful photos

  • 13 September 2021
    Frances Stewart

    Thank you for this fabulous recipe. I make a chocolate cake every year for Christmas (My mother makes the fruit cake).
    I will make your cake this year as it sounds so lovely and delicious. My work colleagues will also enjoy it also as a lovely suprise next week for morning tea.
    Cant wait to bake this wonderful mountain of chocolate.

  • 20 October 2021
    Ingrid Canton

    Hello, it looks delicious, I can’t wait to make for Thanksgiving! Could you give me the recipe for the praline cream that is used to make the insert. Thank you such! I love watching you instagram!!

  • 22 October 2021

    it looks delicious, Can I make the mixture and put it in the fridge and then bake it after about 12 hours ??

  • 15 December 2021
    jennifer thieroff

    Is praline cream the same as praline paste?

  • 04 February 2022

    Hi Sharon, This looks so good! I can’t find praline paste or muscavado here, but I am thinking I could use Nutella and brown sugar instead. Do you think that could work?


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