Dark Chocolate Mousse Cake with Raspberry Coulis, Vanilla Mascarpone and Pistachio Crumb

This is a truly great cake that is very simple to put together. The key is to not overcook it so it retains a nice mousse-like texture. It needs a good few hours to cool before slicing, so ideally make it in the morning to serve in the evening. It keeps well in the fridge for up to a week.


  • 165g butter, plus a little extra, melted, to grease tin
  • 300g dark chocolate (minimum 60% cocoa solids)
  • 275g caster sugar
  • pinch flaky sea salt
  • 5 large free range eggs
  • 1 tbsp ground almonds, plus extra for dusting
  • icing sugar, for dusting (optional)
Serves 12


  1. Preheat the oven to 150°C.
  2. Brush a 20cm springform cake tin with the extra melted butter and dust with the ground almonds, shaking off any excess.
  3. Melt the butter, chocolate, sugar and salt in a heatproof bowl suspended over a saucepan of barely simmering water (make sure the bottom of the bowl does not touch the water), then remove from the heat.
  4. Whisk the eggs along with the ground almonds until very well combined. It is important that the eggs are very well incorporated. Add the warm chocolate mixture to the egg mixture a little at a time, whisking constantly so that the eggs don’t scramble. Keep whisking until the mixture thickens slightly.
  5. Pour into the prepared tin and bake for 30–35 minutes, until set around the edges with the slightest wobble in the centre.
  6. Leave the cake to sit in the tin until cold. Dust with icing sugar if desired.
  7. Place a slice of cake in the centre of each plate. Sprinkle a little pistachio crumb on the side and top with a quenelle of vanilla mascarpone. Drizzle over the berry coulis and serve with fresh berries.

To Plate & Serve

Pistachio Crumb
Makes ¾ cup
  • 5 digestive biscuits
  • 1∕₃ cup shelled pistachios
  • 30g melted butter

Place the ingredients into a blender and blitz for a couple of seconds until you have a coarse crumb.

Vanilla Mascarpone
Makes 1 cup
  • 1 cup mascarpone
  • ½ vanilla pod, seeds only
  • 1 tsp icing sugar
  • zest of ½ lemon, finely grated

Mix all of the ingredients together and store in the fridge until ready to serve.

Raspberry Coulis
Makes 1 cup
  • 200g fresh raspberries (or use frozen and defrosted)
  • 80g icing sugar

Place the berries in the blender with the icing sugar and blend until you have a smooth consistency. Pass through a sieve to remove the seeds and put into a squeezy bottle. Store in the fridge until needed.

Extracted from Fresh from Akaroa by Ant and Lou Bentley published by Penguin Random House NZ, RRP $50.00. Text © Ant and Lou Bentley, 2019. Photography © Alan Gillard, 2019