Chocolate Genoise

Updated on 27 Apr 2012:I’ve included cup measurements for this great cake, hope more people will be able to try this cake out! I will also try to include cup measurements for future recipes – if there’s any old recipes that you would like to try but didn’t have cup measurements, do let me know so I can try to get it for you! (Or you can go to Traditional Oven for a conversion – I always convert the measurements in recipes using this site! That site’s amazing, it converts flour, sugar and butter amounts!)

If you are looking for a soft, spongy and porous chocolate cake, look no further! I’ve made this cake countless of times – plain, sandwiched with mousse, into swiss rolls and yule logs etc… and they had all been so, so, so good and delicious!

It is the perfect chocolate sponge cake recipe for me and I hope it becomes yours too!

And you know what? I baked this sponge cake and assembled it into something really sinful and delicious (you may have already know what it is if you’ve been following my Facebook page!)

I will be posting it up in the next 24 hours… so remember to come back and check it out! ;)

Start with flour and cocoa powder – there’s no leavening in this cake at all!

Sift it once…

… twice and thrice.

Very, very airy, light and evenly distributed.

Place it back into the sieve – you’re gonna sieve it for the fourth time later on!

Four eggs in a medium pot.

Add in the sugar and whisk it immediately to prevent lumps from forming.

Whisk away!

(Note the colour of the mixture!)

Place it over medium-low heat and whisk it continuously until the mixture is warmed – like baby’s milk. It will look very frothy like this.

Transfer it into a clean, large mixing bowl and whisk it on high speed.

(Note how the colour has lightened!)

Whisk it on low for at least a minute to stabilize the air bubbles…

Until a you get a trail when you lift up the beaters – the colour of the batter is really pale and it would have tripled in volume.

Sift in half of the flour mixture.

Fold gently until almost incorporated.

Sift in the remaining flour mixture.

Fold until fully incorporated.

Melt some butter…

… And add in one-third of the cake batter.

Fold until the butter has been fully incorporated – butter sinks quick and fast when added into the batter directly, making it hard to incorporate. This method helps to lighten the butter first.

Add the butter-mixed batter back and fold gently.

Transfer the mixture into a greased and bottom-lined tin.

 Bake away and you’ve gotten yourself a delicious genoise!


Chocolate Genoise (makes a 7 or 8-inch cake)
adapted from recipe Chocolate Raspberry Ruffle Cake by Julia Child: Lessons with Master Chefs

You’ll need:

45 grams (1/3 cup + 1 tablespoon) plain flour
35 grams (1/3 cup + 1 tablespoon) good-quality cocoa powder (I love Varlhona!)
4 eggs, cold or at room temperature
100 (1/2 cup) grams caster/granulated sugar
45 grams (3 tablespoons) hot, melted butter

Preheat the oven to 170 degrees Celsius. Grease a 7- or 8-inch baking tin and line the bottom with parchment paper. Set aside.

Sift the flour and cocoa powder together thrice. Set aside.

Place the eggs in a medium pot or a large metal mixing bowl. Add in the sugar and whisk immediately until combined. You must whisk the sugar immediately into the eggs otherwise lumps will form and it will be very hard to get rid of them later on.

Hold the pot / mixing bowl over medium-low heat and whisk the egg-sugar mixture constantly, to bring up the temperature until its like baby’s milk – warm but not hot. The mixture would be foamy. You can set it directly over the heat, just make sure that you remove it from time to time so you don’t end up with cooked eggs.

Transfer the mixture in the pot into a mixing bowl and whisk it with a hand-held electric mixer on high speed until the bubbles start to disappear. The mixture will triple in volume. Turn the mixer down to low and whisk it for at least 1 minute, to stabilize the air bubbles in the cake batter. The cake batter will leave a trail when you lift up the beaters and will sink and merge back slowly into the batter.

Sift in half of the flour mixture and gently fold it in until almost all are combined. Sift in the remaining half of the flour mixture and fold until no flour pockets are visible. Do not over-mix.

Add one-third of the cake batter into the hot, melted butter. Use a smaller spatula and fold the butter into the cake batter thoroughly. Pour the butter-mixed batter back into the rest of the cake batter and fold in gently.

Transfer the cake batter into the baking tin. Tilt the tin so the batter spreads out evenly and drop it two to three times on the counter-top to burst the uneven air bubbles.

Bake in the middle rack for 15 to 20 minutes until the cake springs back when touched gently and a skewer inserted into the centre of the cake comes out clean.

Let the cake cool completely in the tin before decorating / frosting it.


Happy baking (and remember to check back tomorrow!)

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40 thoughts on “Chocolate Genoise

  1. I have been wanting to make a matcha version of the swiss roll for some time and if the recipe you posted didn’t require me to weigh my ingredients, I’d be all over it. :) I think I’ll have to adapt my madeleine recipe to this and make a test batch, soon.

      • I’m printing the revised version out so I’ll have a copy as my nephew is taking my computer home for the night (fingers crossed) to do some work on it. I’m defrosting cream cheese to make chocolate cheesecake on the weekend but I will definitely try this out.

  2. I’ve never liked any type of sponge cake as I used to wear plates (upper palette) during orthodontic treatment for five years growing up. And yet, I’m looking forward to your next post. Have always wanted a great recipe for this. And this is the one!

    • Wow that’s so sweet of your mom to make it for you! My mom’s not really a baker person, but she loves this genoise with sweetened whipped cream (more than any other baked goods I’ve ever baked!)

  3. This is a great recipe Jasline, you did a beautiful job with the instructions they are crystal clear, very well done and I will definitely be making this. I like it so much better than the chocolate sponge recipe I have always used. Thank you for posting this.

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    • Hi David, sorry for the late reply as I don’t check this blog anymore. You can do it in an 8-inch tin, but the cake won’t be as tall. Do cut short the baking time and start checking on the cake earlier so that it doesn’t get overbaked. :)

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