Wanting to make something special for your valentine? Ultimate chocolate cake is the answer!
So my brother’s girlfriend really loves chocolate and he found this recipe called Ultimate Chocolate Cake on the BBC Good Food website. He really wanted to make it for her for Valentines day. Thing is, he doesn’t bake all that often so asked if he could enlist my help. Of course I accepted, I love baking!
Only thing was… once we had made the cake… my whole house smelt of this chocolate cake… and I couldn’t eat any of it as it was for his girlfriend. This must be how Phoebe felt in Friends when she had to give the triplets back to Frank. I was sad. I was jealous. I decided to take action! I wanted my cake and I was damn well going to eat it too!
So here I am two days later making the same cake. The original recipe says to make a ganache icing, but I had seen Martha Stewart’s chocolate frosting on her ultimate chocolate cake recipe the other day… kinda wanted to try that out instead as it looked sickeningly delicious!
So here is what you need for the cake:
- 200g Dark Chocolate
- 200g Butter
- 1tbsp Instant Coffee Granules
- 85g Self Raising Flour
- 85g Plain Flour
- 1/4 tsp Bicarbonated Soda
- 200g Light Muscovado Sugar
- 200g Golden Caster Sugar
- 25g Cocoa Powder
- 3 Medium Eggs
- 75ml Buttermilk
Here is what you need for Martha’s chocolate frosting:
- 170g Butter (Room Temp!)
- 440g Icing Sugar
- 100g Cocoa Powder
- 120ml Milk
- 2 tsp Vanilla Extract
Start by preheating your oven to 140°C. I know it sounds low but trust me… it makes good cake!
Butter and line the base of a 20cm round cake tin. As deep as you can find. Mine was about 7.5cm high.
Break the chocolate into pieces, cut the butter into cubes, dissolve the coffee granules in 125ml cold water and then put the lot into a heavy based saucepan. Stir over a low heat until it’s all melted. Do Not Overheat… very important. Set aside to cool slightly whilst you prepare the rest of the ingredients.
Tip! Remember that the pan doesn’t have to be on the heat the whole time, if it starts to get too hot just take it off the hob. The residual heat in the pan will melt the rest anyway.
Next, sieve both the flours, bicarbonated soda and cocoa powder into a large bowl. Add both the sugars. Get your hands in there and rub between thumbs and fingers to get rid of any lumps.
Pour the buttermilk into a jug and add the 3 eggs, beat and put to one side.
Now you have all your ingredients ready, add the egg/buttermilk mixture to the flour mixture and combine until nearly incorporated. Then gradually add the chocolate mixture until you end up with a runny cake batter.
Try not to mix it too much, only until all the ingredients are smoothly blended. Then pour into the prepared tin.
Put onto the middle shelf of the oven for 1 hour 30 minutes. Yes I know, it’s a painfully long time to be taunted by the smells that are guaranteed to emanate from your oven but it’s well worth it. Trust me.
Test at about 1 hour 25 minutes by poking a wooden skewer into the middle of the cake. If it comes out clean it’s ready, if there is cake mixture on the skewer it needs a little longer.
Leave in the tin for about 15-20 minutes. Then remove and put on a wire rack to cool completely. I can’t stress enough how important this step is.
Impatience on this will lead to a cake that will fall apart when you cut it in half (speaking from unfortunate experiences!) It will also make it nigh on impossible to get the frosting on well. I know it won’t effect the taste but it is nice to have a cake that looks as good as it tastes!
Next, the frosting!
Here is where to find Martha Stewart’s Ultimate chocolate cake recipe.
Put the butter in a large bowl and soften with a spatula. Sieve in the icing sugar & cocoa powder. Then add the milk & vanilla extract.
Carefully mix together (or you will end up in a mushroom cloud of icing sugar!) until it is all mixed well.
Then comes the fun part. Cut the cake in two. The original recipe says to cut it into three but I think this would be more hassle than it’s worth so just did two. Spread some frosting on the top of the bottom layer then add the top layer of cake. Completely cover top and sides with the remaining icing and refrigerate until you wish to devour it’s chocolaty goodness. Then lick every bowl and spoon in sight!!
The following pictures are what happened in my house… in that order.
This cake is so rich and delicious it’s totally worth the effort that goes into making one.
So what are your plans for valentines day/weekend?
Any nice recipes you’re planning on making for your other half?