Running Cold and Chocolate with Francois Chocolate Loaf Cake

by Joanne on January 31, 2011

No great mile accomplishments this week.  I’m backing off to 50 miles with a shorter long run of 13 to 14.  A down week is needed, plus the Beer & Chili 10K on Sat.

Today I got up with the intention of getting that long run out of the way since Sunday was a day off. No go. I looked at the treadmill and decided there are better days, went back to bed.  An hour later, Shane and I went outside in the chilling cold and ran 6.2 miles.  It was 7 degrees when we left and 3 degrees when we got back.  Looks like another cold spell this week. Oh Joy!


This month, Leslie of Lethally Delicious picked our recipe.  It was one of Francois Payard’s easier recipes and the result was FAB-U-LOUS!


Since I made changes, I’ll post my version but for the original Payard recipe, check it out at Leslie’s site. You’ll love it and it’s really not that hard nor time consuming.

*There is a glaze that goes along with this cake. I really didn’t think it needed it so it’s not included in my version.

Serves:  A lot Rolling on the floor laughing


  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 1/3 cup cocoa powder
  • 3/4 tsp baking powder
  • 8 oz almond paste (that’s right, guys – I MORE than double this wonderful tasting stuff!)
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 3 whole eggs
  • 1/2 cup cream (oh yeah! full fat in this one!)
  • 1/3 cup semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1/3 cup chopped, toasted hazelnuts (filberts)
  • 1/2 cup toasted slivered almonds
  • 8 oz cream cheese – room temperature*
  • 4 TBS unsalted butter – melted *
  • *Francois’ recipe uses simply 1 1/4 cup unsalted butter and no cream cheese.

Preheat oven to 350 F.  Line the bottom of a 9 x 5 x 3 loaf pan (large) with parchment paper and spray with non stick spray. 

Mix together the flour, cocoa, baking powder and set aside.

Mix the almond paste and sugar in an electric mixer until fully mixed together.  Add the eggs one at a time. Make sure to scrape the bowl.

Continue mixing for 8 minutes until the mixture lightens up the gradually add the cream.  Now add the dry ingredients and keep mixing until smooth. 

Add the chocolate chips and nuts then mix in the cheese and butter.

Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 75 minutes or until a knife inserted in the middle comes out clean.  Allow to cook before removing from the pan.


Excellent recipe!  The cake, although heavy because I added WAY more almond paste than what Payard called for, was so moist, rich and delicious.

A little whipped topping and some chocolate syrup….it just doesn’t get any better.

Great pick, Leslie!

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  • At 2011.01.31 08:15, Heather said:

    I seriously LOVE how gooey this looks – gooey cake/bread is my favorite!

    • At 2011.01.31 08:46, Joanne said:

      One of Payards better recipes. It was one heavy but SO GOOD loaf! Hope J’s doing better today.

      • At 2011.01.31 09:18, Peggy said:

        I made this one. Yea me. However, mine did not rise as much as yours. I did not do the glaze over all of mine either. It was good just plain. A little dry though for me, maybe I overcooked it just a bit?? Anyway, hope you had a good weekend and your cake looks great.

        • At 2011.01.31 16:04, Amanda @ bakingwithoutabox said:

          Wait? I’m sorry? “No great mile accomplishments” and “50 miles this week” in the same paragraph, right? Sounds incredible to me. Stop selling yourself short superstar!

          That cake looks so moist and rich. Hazelnuts and chocolate chips all in the same bite dressed up with that drizzled sauce and whipped cream. Sigh.

          • At 2011.01.31 16:10, Leslie said:

            Your version looks (and sounds so good) I want to make it immediately! The extra almond paste no doubt helped keep it moist–way to go on that one. Thanks for baking with me!

            • At 2011.01.31 17:32, Ginny said:

              Thanks for the comments on my blog. I hope your race goes well this weekend. It’s so, so, so very hard not to “go after” and “expect” to PR, but finally I have learned that sometimes that is just not realistic for me. Even if I’m in shape to PR, sometimes the day is not right for me. It’s been a very hard lesson for me to learn.

              I love chocolate! I can’t bake because I eat WAY too much.

              • At 2011.01.31 20:08, Joanne said:

                test reply to ginny

                • At 2011.01.31 19:54, Julie said:

                  I love the changes you made to the recipe. Looks so delicious!

                  • At 2011.02.02 05:59, Sophie said:

                    Congrats & good for you!! Yeah!! The cake looks absolutely STUNNING!!!

                    I just moved my blog to Come over @ my blog & check it out! Yoy must update your RSS!

                    • At 2011.04.05 00:36, Susan said:

                      This was a great loaf cake. I ended up making my own almond paste because I couldn’t find any in the store when I made this. Of course, the other day while shopping I found the stuff. Bought two cans and put them in the cupboard for next time. 🙂 Yours looks amazing!

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