Reader Clara writes in with this question about making a flourless cake:
Why do you use a double boiler instead of the microwave [to melt the chocolate and butter], as you’ve been known to do on other occasions? Is it the quantity of the ingredients? It seems that there’s always a risk to the chocolate when you use a double boiler.
Good question Clara. And in fact the microwave is my instrument of choice for melting chocolate (five or six 20-second bursts usually does the trick). I don’t really have an answer save to say that I’m used to doing it this way. The eggs and the chocolate each take about 10 minutes. But you’re right, whenever you use a double boiler there’s a risk that you’ll get an errant drop of water in the chocolate causing it to “seize” (however the butter significantly reduces that risk). You can do whatever you’re comfortable with, provided your chocolate never gets much over 110 degrees.