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Chocolate heaven; Double whammy of dreamy choc and ganache icing is so good you could eat it all in a single sitting.

Byline: JAMES MORTON'S

In my second cookbook, I have a cake that I claim is the best chocolate cake I could come up with.

It's an extravagant creation with cream and fruit and ganache and it's really very good indeed. I was proud of it.

Enter, this cake. At first, I was sceptical of the new generation of chocolate cake recipes that have grown in popularity on the internet. Too much boiling water leading to a very slack mixture and too firm a cake. But after a bit of tinkering, I was ready to embrace the trend.

Once you've tried this cake, you'll never throw a bit of cocoa powder into a standard Victoria sponge recipe again. This one is both super-chocolatey and unbelievably light.

And it's paired with my very favourite icing - a chocolate ganache buttercream. Just try it. My goodness, it's amazing.

WORLD'S BEST CHOCOLATE CAKE

INGREDIENTS Makes one massive sandwich cake, or two single layered cakes

FOR THE CAKE:

| 180g boiling water

| 25g cocoa powder

| 100g natural yoghurt

| 70g unsalted butter

| 70g good dark chocolate, 65-70 per cent cocoa solids

| 200g soft brown sugar

| 2 medium eggs

| 2tsp vanilla extract (or 1tsp vanilla bean paste)

| 180g plain flour | 2tsp baking powder

| A pinch table salt

FOR THE CHOCOLATE GANACHE BUTTERCREAM:

| 150g double cream

| 150g good dark chocolate, 65-70 per cent cocoa solids

| 200g unsalted butter

| 400g icing sugar

METHOD

1 First, preheat oven to 170C/150C fan/ Gas 3. Grease and line a couple of 8-inch cake tins with baking paper (non-stick greaseproof paper). For cakes like this, I like to draw around the bases of the tins and cut out circles, then just grease the sides.

2 You'll need three bowls. In one medium bowl (a pudding bowl will do), weigh your flour, baking powder and salt. Mix gently and set aside.

3 Place your just-boiled water and cocoa powder in another medium bowl. Whisk these together until you've got no lumps. Add yoghurt and whisk some more, until smooth. Set this aside.

4 Melt butter and chocolate together in a microwave and place in a large mixing bowl. Add your sugar and beat hard until the mixture is smooth and grain-free. Add your eggs, one at a time, and beat well after each addition. Add your vanilla and beat until combined.

5 Add your flour mixture and your water mixture into your large mixing bowl and mix until combined - make sure there are no lumps but don't go crazy with the mixing. Pour this into your cake tins and place in the oven. Bake for 30-40 minutes, or until bouncy to touch and a skewer comes out clean.

6 While those are baking, make the icing. First, make the ganache by heating your cream in a saucepan until simmering. Break your chocolate into a bowl and pour your hot cream on top. Mix gently until smooth and place in fridge.

7 Then make the buttercream itself. In a large bowl, place your butter - microwave it if it's not soft until it's nearly melted. Add your icing sugar and beat using an electric whisk until as white as your can get it. Take your prepared ganache out of the fridge and gently mix this in using a spoon. If it's still a little loose, place in the fridge until it's of a spreadable consistency.

8 Once cakes have cooled, turn them out of tins so the bottom side is facing upwards - this is going to be your new flat top. Spread with icing and place your other cake on top. Use a palette knife or spatula to cover the whole cake in icing and spread smooth, before decorating with a little spare grated chocolate.

Because the mixture is very loose, make sure your cake tin is not going to let any seep through. If you've got loose-bottomed tins, enure they're well greased and lined to prevent leakage.
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Sunday Mail (Glasgow, Scotland)
Article Type:Recipe
Date:Jul 24, 2016
Words:651
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