Dark Fudgy Chocolate Cake

If you want a rich, dark, slightly gooey fudgy chocolate cake, this is the one for you. Small point to note… maybe best to serve *after* Lent is over, as otherwise anyone who’s avoiding chocolate until Easter may find it impossible to resist. It’s quite an odd recipe in that it’s really, really liquid up to the point of putting it in the oven, but don’t worry – that’s meant to happen.

(serves about 16 people – it’s really rich)

Base:

224g flour
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
400g sugar
100g coarsely chopped dark chocolate
85g butter (OR 1/2 cup vegetable oil will do if you’re desperate)
8 tbsp cocoa powder
2 eggs
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 cups water (OR 1 cup strong black coffee and 1 cup buttermilk, OR combination thereof)

  1. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and bicarbonate of soda.
  2. In a saucepan, dissolve the sugar in the water over a medium-high heat.
  3. Remove from the heat, add the coarsely chopped chocolate and the butter and whisk until smooth.
  4. Whisk in the cocoa powder.
  5. Beat in the eggs, then stir in the vanilla.
  6. Add the flour mixture, whisking until incorporated. It’ll still be a very runny mixture, but don’t worry.
  7. Divide the batter between 2 well-greased, 8-inch-round cake pans and bake in the lower third of an oven pre-heated to gas mark 4 / 180oC until the cakes are springy to the touch and have pulled away from the sides of the pans: about 30 minutes.
  8. Transfer to racks and let cool for 10 minutes. Remove from the pans and place on the racks. Let cool completely.

Icing:

300g sugar
300g finely chopped chocolate
2tbsp cocoa powder
2 tsp vanilla
180ml double cream
127g butter cut into tablespoon-size pieces and chilled

  1. Combine the finely chopped chocolate (can food-process for extra fine-ness) and the butter, and vanilla.
  2. In a medium saucepan, bring the cream and sugar to a boil.
  3. Pour the cream mixture over the chocolate and let stand for 2 minutes, then stir the mixture until smooth.
  4. Refrigerate, stirring occasionally, until thickened to a spreadable consistency; about 1 hour 15 minutes – keep an eye on this, as if it stays in longer you’ll get a less smooth effect

I’ll put a post up soon about how to do the chocolate letters, but the basic idea is to melt some chocolate, grease the bottom of a silicone cake tin, and write backwards in melted chocolate on top of the pan. Quite effective!

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