Monday, 31 May 2010
Quadruple Chocolate Loaf Cake
Sometimes you need a little bit of extra love.... you need to know that someone is thinking of you.... and be reminded of home with something special.
At the moment I have a son who is doing his GCSEs and another who is away at university with his first year exams looming. I can pamper the one at home with his favourite treats, making the revision a little more bearable. The one away has to make do with a flying visit, dinner out and a package of (mainly chocolate) goodies to aid his long revision sessions.
Nigella Lawson has a recipe for a quadruple chocolate loaf cake in her book 'Feast', it's the perfect cake for those wanting a good fix of chocolatey deliciousness. There's cocoa and dark chocolate in the cake, chocolate syrup to drench the cake and sliced chocolate to top it off.
Try to get the syrup into the holes
A disaster occurred when I was taking the cake out of the oven, I dropped the tin and most of the cake flew out, decorating the floor. But this turned out to be a good thing. Why? Because I had been measuring and baking so many different things that morning I'd forgotten to add the sugar to the cake mixture. Urgh! Thankfully, this cake is super easy to make and the second one came out perfectly.
Obviously I couldn't cut into the cake, but here is one that I made last year, you can see the chocolate syrup running through the cake
Quadruple Chocolate Loaf Cake
Adapted from Nigella Lawson
Nigella's recipe uses a food processor to blitz all the ingredients together, I used a hand-held electric mixer instead. I also melted the chocolate for the main part of the cake.
You will need a large loaf tin, mine was 23cm x 14cm, 7cm deep and Nigella uses one that measures 21cm x 11cm and 7.5cm deep.
For the cake:
200g plain flour
½ teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
50g cocoa powder
275g caster sugar
175g unsalted butter, softened
2 large eggs
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
80 ml soured cream - or substitute double cream
175g dark chocolate, melted - I used half dark and half milk chocolate
125ml boiling water
For the syrup:
1 teaspoon cocoa powder
100g caster sugar
To top the cake:
1 small bar of dark chocolate, cut into slivers - I used milk chocolate
Line the cake tin with non-stick baking parchment and preheat the oven to 170ºC. Melt the chocolate for the cake in a glass bowl either in a microwave or set over a pan of simmering water.
Put the flour, bicarbonate of soda, cocoa, sugar, butter, eggs, vanilla and sour cream into a large bowl and using an electric hand whisk, start whisking the mixture together. Add the melted chocolate and gradually add the boiling water. Whisk until you have a lovely glossy mixture.
Pour the mixture into the prepared loaf tin and pop it into the oven. Bake for about an hour, it may need more or less time. Check with a metal skewer, insert it into the cake and if it comes out clean it's ready.
While the cake is cooking, put the syrup ingredients into a small saucepan and bring to the boil. Boil for about 5 minutes, you want a reduced liquid, more of a caramelized syrup.
When the cake has cooked, remove it from the tin, keeping the paper on and put it onto a cooling rack. Make some holes in the top of the cake and pour the syrup as evenly as possible over the cake, trying to get it to run into the holes.
When the cake has completely cooled, you can remove the paper and put it onto a serving plate. Slice the small bar of chocolate into slivers and scatter it over the top of the cake before serving.
Chocolate = comfort
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