I've decided to make a few "blog features" in order to get through some recipes i've been wanting to try for ages or to try some new ones I come across. This is the start of one of those "features" that I'm calling the Weekly Look at the Cook Book where I'll use one of the cook books I have and create one of the recipes in them every week.
This week I've made Donna Hay's Basic Chocolate Cake from her cook book Simple Essentials: Chocolate. I bought this book half price a few weeks ago and was looking through it when I was at our radio show and the members of my youth group who were there were keen for all sorts of treats from this book. I was planning to make the double chocolate cookies but heard that some of the group were celebrating birthdays this week and so it only seemed right to make a cake and the photo for this one was screaming out to me!
I had to split the batter between 2 smaller cake tins because that's all I had to work with but I sandwiched the cakes together with some Dulce de Leche, then topped the cake with a little DDL and then topped that with the chocolate glaze from the book too as well as some chocolate chips. It was a really tasty cake, but I'm not so sure about the glaze, it didn't come out as liquid as it looked in the book and I think was a little too chocolatey: next time I think I'd use a little less chocolate and a little more cream and use chocolate with a lower cocoa percentage, but it worked well as an icing as opposed to a glaze.
It got great reviews tonight from my youth group who almost ate it all - I had to save 2 slices for me and Rob and we loved it too, I'll definitely be making this again! I've decided to enter this cake in the Tried Tasted and True food event but not the glaze seeing as I didn't think it was as good as it could be.
Here's the recipes for the cake and the glaze from the book.
Basic Chocolate Cake
Serves 8-10 (I got 12 servings out of it)
375g butter, softened
1.5 cups light brown sugar
3 medium eggs
2 cups plain flour
2 tsp baking powder
2/3 cup cocoa, double sifted
3/4 cup milk
1 quantity chocolate glaze recipe (see below)
1. Preheat oven to 160˚C
2. Place butter and sugar in a bowl and mix with electric mixer for 8-10 mins or until smooth and creamy.
3. Add the eggs one at a time and beat well.
4. Fold in the flour, baking powder and cocoa. Stir in the milk.
5. Transfer the mixture to an 8" round cake tin lined with baking paper. Bake for 1hr 10 mins or until cooked through and a skewer can be withdrawn clean.
6. Cool for 10 minutes then turn out onto a wire rack. Ice with the chocolate glaze.
150 g chopped dark couverture chocolate
1/2 cup single (aka pouring) cream
1. Place the chocolate and cream in a saucepan over a low heat, stirring until melted and smooth.
2. Allow the mixture to stand for 10 minutes to thicken slightly.
3. Pour over a well chilled cake and tap to remove air bubbles. Or refrigerate and serve as a rich chocolate sauce for desserts.