Wedding cake - rich dark chocolate cake

Wedding cake - rich dark chocolate cake

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(87 ratings)


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Cooking time

Prep: 40 mins Cook: 2 hrs, 30 mins Plus cooling

Skill level



Serves 50

This recipe makes the bottom layer of our three tier wedding cake or a simple delicious chocolate cake, perfect with a touch of cream

Nutrition and extra info

Nutrition info

Nutrition per serving



  • 650g unsalted butter
  • 650g plain chocolate (70% cocoa)
  • 100ml very strong coffee- espresso is ideal
  • 3 tsp vanilla essence
  • 650g plain flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 950g light soft brown sugar
  • 10 eggs
  • 2 x 284ml/9½ fl oz soured cream

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  1. Heat oven to 160C/fan 140C/gas 3. Butter, double-line and wrap the sides of the 30cm deep-round cake tin as before. Put the butter and chocolate into a medium saucepan, then stir over a low heat until melted and smooth. Stir in the coffee and vanilla.
  2. Sift the flour, baking powder and bicarbonate of soda into the biggest bowl you have. Add the sugar, breaking down any lumps with your fingertips if necessary. Beat the eggs and soured cream together in a jug or bowl and pour into the flour mix. Pour in the melted chocolate mix as well, then stir with a wooden spoon until you have a thick, even chocolaty batter.
  3. Pour into the prepared tin and bake for 2½ hrs – don’t open the oven door before 2 hrs is up, as this will cause the cake to sink. Once cooked, leave in the tin to cool completely. The unfilled cake will keep for up to four days, wrapped as before, or frozen for a month.

Recipe from Good Food magazine, June 2006

Comments, questions and tips

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Show comments
jotraeger's picture
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and is soured cream the same thing as sour cream?

jotraeger's picture
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and is soured cream the same thing as sour cream?

jotraeger's picture
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Where do you get bicarbonate of soda???

hodgsol's picture

Going to try this having read all the excellent reports. However, no one has replied as to how you tell when it is cooked - skewer clean or just assume after 2 1/2 hours it's ready. Is it less time for the 6"? Expensive ingedients to get it wrong! Also, any one tried it with hot chocolate instead of coffee as suggested?

lynncann's picture

How do you ice the chocolate and lemon cakes do you still use marzipan etc?

kiejay's picture

anyone made this in a large sqaure tin (i have a 14")? just wondering how long you baked it for? any help would be great its for my sons 21st birthday

eagles43's picture
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I am making this again for a friends 30th birthday in 3 weeks and I will be adding the lemon tier this time round. The chocolate version I wrote about in June for my friends 40th turn out amazing. It was very mosit and all the guests were very impressed with how gorgeous it tasted! The only difficulty I had was with the chocolate filling and found this came through the icing on the corners of my cake. I think I just put too much on the outside of the cake so this time I will be caucious! Also putting it in the fridge once it has been filled and covered in the buttercream for about 2 hours and letting it set has been recommended and I will try it this time.

jendeb's picture

Hi there,
I am hoping to use this receipe to be eaten a Saturday.
I need to have the cake finished & decorated the Friday.
It states it keeps for four days so I will need to bake it on the Wednesday then buttercream & ice on Thursday.
Can anyone advise how long the cake stays fresh as I would really like to bake it on the Tuesday - would you think this would be ok?
Please help!!!

woodenspoons's picture

I needed a 10" round cake and tried various suggestions on here. Mistakes are expensive with this recipie. In the end I found half quantities worked best for me and the cake was just deep enough to match the other layers when filled and iced. Using a fan oven I baked it for about 1hr 50mins but as ovens seem to vary maybe have a peep after 1hr 40 or so and test it with a skewer.

babyoven's picture

An easy way of cutting the cake is to place it on a turntable and use a large knife and rotate the table as you are cutting until just the last bit in the centre needs to be cut (you keep the knife still) Hope this helps!

babyoven's picture

You cant taste the coffee!

lalybaba's picture

Have made this three times now and it has always been a huge success. The first time I made it I took it out the oven slightly too soon and it sank in the middle. It cuts beautifully and is really fabulously chocolatey.

josiejo2112's picture

Hi koalarose32,

I would suggest that you oven is too low, it should be at 160oc (140oc for fan oven). Just made mine in electric oven at 160oc at it came out fine. - Just a thought!

kwinyard's picture
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I made one for my daughter's wedding. Unfortunately the first one was a bit sticky in the middle so we had to eat it!! Absolutely gorgeous! I'm sure the wedding guests will appreciate it!

Very easy recipe to follow though I had to alter it to suit a smaller tin. Will definitely be doing more--wouldmake a special dessert for a dinner party.

karli81's picture

Hi can I make this in two sandwich tins or is it best to make it in a cake tin and cut in half???? I am worried about the 'cutting' which is why I would prefer to cook in 2 tins.

koalarose32's picture

mine sunk.....I need it for this saturday, no one opened the oven door... Iused a mixer to mix the eggs...I had the oven on 140 electric, no fan...any suggestions???

jess240589's picture

Hi everyone,
Is it possible to leave the coffee out of the recipe altogether and just make it with the remaining ingredients? I'm making the cake for my mum's wedding and she hates flavoured chocolate so orange, coffee etc flavourings won't cut it. Alternatively would 100ml of drinking chocolate work? I have no idea (I'm a total cake novice)...
Also, egg size, medium or large?

twright11's picture

hi there thank mary, perhaps it happens with chocolate of different cocoa solids but i added the coffee and vanilla into the cake mix after i added the chocolate mix and it was fine, very moist and highly commented - will definately make it again!!

marymoore's picture

Re the 'splitting', it simply did not happen when I used this recipe. Maybe it was the chocolate I used - Green & Blacks dark cooking choc (I got it in Tesco)

marymoore's picture

Brilliant moist cake - made it for my daughter's wedding. Was worried about long journey in the car, so I made my butter cream from just icing sugar and unsalted butter, vanilla essence and melted Green & Blacks dark cooking chocolate (11 squares to every 8oz icing sugar)- lovely.

Also made half the recipe for my grandson's birthday and topped with melted Cadbury's dairy Milk and chocolate buttons to decorate.

Freezes well before filling and decorating.

The best chocolate cake that I have ever made!