Turinois (Chestnut and Chocolate Cake)
1/4 teaspoon vegetable oil, to oil the pan
1 can (about 1 pound) chestnut spread or purée flavored with sugar and vanilla
2 tablespoons dark rum
1/2 stick unsalted butter (2 ounces), softened
8 ounces bittersweet chocolate, melted (3/4 cup)
1 cup crème fraîche or sour cream
6 to 8 cookies
Oil a rectangular cake pan with a capacity of 3 to 4 cups. Cut a thin strip of parchment paper (about 12 inches long and 1 1/2 inches wide), and position it in the bottom of the pan so that the ends of the strip run up two opposite sides of the pan and extend a little beyond the edge; this will make the turinois easier to unmold at serving time. Put the chestnut spread in a bowl, and add the rum, soft butter and melted chocolate. Mix thoroughly to combine the ingredients well, then pour into the prepared pan. Cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 4 hours (or up to a couple of days). At serving time, unmold the turinois onto a serving platter, and cut it into wedges. Spoon some crème faîche or sour cream over each wedge and serve, if you like, with a cookie.
Pairs Well With
Enjoy this scrumptious dessert with an ingredient that may be new to you: canned chestnut purée or spread. As an ingredient in desserts, puréed vegetables, meat and poultry sauces, and creamy soups, chestnut purée (made from chestnuts, water and corn syrup) contains no fat, cholesterol or sodium. This rich, classic, unbaked “cake” is for people who like dense, assertive chocolate desserts. It contains canned purée of chestnut flavor with vanilla and sugar from the southwest of France, and this purée is also wonderful served on its own or with ice cream. This is a super-easy dessert, requiring only a few minutes to combine the chestnut, melted chocolate and rum. Extremely rich, the turinois will easily serve eight people.