As some of you might know I’m not really a chocolate person. Hand me a desert menu and I’ll always pick something vanilla or creamy, like Panna Cotta, Ile Flottante or Crême Brulée.
However, there are those occasions that just call for chocolate. Like coming home after a long day, sitting down and just slipping into comfort mode. This for me involves watching a couple of episodes of Grey’s Anatomy (or Brothers and Sisters, or Private Practice) and eating chocolate. That’s comfort chocolate.
Then, there’s give-me-some-energy chocolate, for those moments at work, where your attention span is just diminishing by the minute, and you just need something to give you that push to get through the rest of the day. A cup of coffee and a piece of chocolate normally sort that.
And then there are those festive moments of celebration that call for something fabulously decadent, like a chocolate cake. Dana’s birthday fell into that category. When I found out that Dana was having a big birthday party, my first thought was: “who’s making the cake?” As it turned out no one, they hadn’t planned on serving cake. What?! A birthday party without cake?! Now that’s a ridiculous thought. So I jumped in and offered my baking services.
What I didn’t know at that point was that I would end up baking 6 cakes for 60 people! Quite a challenge, but then, I’ve always been up for stretching my baking skills. After some lengthy thoughts on what to make, I decided to make my legendary Coconut Victoria Sponge (which had impressed the judges at the baking competition), the best ever Carrot Cake (recipe and photos soon), and, as piece de résistance, a decadent fudge Chocolate Cake.
This cake is really easy to make, but boy, is it impressive! And don’t be scared of it, it looks far more rich than it actually is… Ok, no, that’s a lie!!! It really is a truly decadent chocolate bomb!
So Dana, this one’s for you! Happy Birthday and all the best to you, you rock girl!
So, do you like Dana’s birthday cake? Do you? Yes? Well then go on and click the “like” button on the top right hand of this article. It’s a brilliant new feature that Lawrence has added to this blog. It will show how many people like any article, and refer back to your Facebook account. So if you “like” the chocolate cake, this will appear on your Facebook profile under recent activity. It’s very exciting. Now anyone who wants to give me the thumbs up can literally do so. Brilliant.
Right oh, it is time to dash off and finish packing my suitcase. Yes, now that the planes are up in the sky again, I’m happy to re-indulge in modern air-travel! I’m off to Istanbul, and I’m so excited! A whole week of Turkish culture, Turkish lifestyle and Turkish food. I’m going to eat my way through Kebab and Pide and Baklava oh and Turkish Delight and all those superb delicacies! So watch this space and expect loads of foodie pictures from my trip! It will be delightful, Turkish delightful, oh oui!!! ★
Makes 1 cake for about 8 people
175g softened butter
175g brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
150g self-raising flour
1 tsp baking powder
50g dark chocolate, melted
200g softened butter
200g icing sugar
200g dark chocolate, melted
Preheat the oven to 180°
In a bowl beat the sugar and butter until fluffy. Add the eggs and vanilla extract and beat some more. Then gradually add the flour, baking powder and cocoa. Once it’s a nice mix beat in the melted chocolate.
Pour the dough into two lined sandwich tins and bake for 30 mins.
Let the cakes cool down in the tins for 5 mins and transfer onto a cake rack to fully cool down.
Make the frosting by beating together butter, chocolate and icing sugar. Generously spread the fudge icing over the two cake halves and decorate with sprinkles, beads, stars or whatever catches your fancy