Wedding cake - rich dark chocolate cake

Wedding cake - rich dark chocolate cake

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(89 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

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  • 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

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mucktub86's picture
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I've made this cake once as a taster wedding cake, the bride and groom LOVED it! I added strawberry puree instead of coffee to the cake and used strawberry buttercream instead of chocolate to crumb coat the cake before icing it.

I'm now about to make it again today to check the cake still tastes as good a week later as I'll be making the cake a week before the wedding.

bacon-n-egg's picture
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For ref: to convert 30cm - 20cm divide by 2.5, 25cm divide by 1.5
30cm - 23 divide by 1.25
Change round to square take one inch off the round ie 20cm is 8" round so square would be 7"(18cm)
To work out oblong - square it first.
When baking over 1 hour always advisable to make a paper/foil collar to prevent burning/over crusting.

nicholataylor's picture

Did everyone only mix with a wooden spoon, or can I use an electric hand mixer?

ali_reynolds's picture

I have made this cake several times and every time it sinks in the middle. I love the flavour and want to keep making it as it tastes amazing. I am making a wedding cake next week and I really want to use this recipe. I don't open the oven at all during cooking and it's definitely cooked in the middle. I've tried moving it to different positions in the oven and adjusting the temperature but it still always sinks. Does anyone have a suggestion?

cakesrgr8's picture

I will definately try this recipe, was looking for a recipe for an 11" and 7" chocolate wedding cake and this sounds great. I have found a great conversion site called "cake o meter", you type in the original recipe that you have and tin size, type in tin you want to use and the site will convert your recipe to required tin size. hope this helps with tin size queries.'s picture

Made this for my sons birthday to cut up and shape for a pirate ship . It was a large 10x12 inch cake , it was a bit dipped in the middle after cooking , although was ooked through, I suspect I didnt place itbin the tin correctly . It was moist and dense , so easy to cut to the desired shape . Filled it with chocolate buttercream and covered it in whipped chocolate ganache . The leftovers were delicious several days later heated in the microwave and served with ice cream . Will make again

gwingle's picture
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I made this cake for my friend’s wedding in June 2012. I was practically a backing novice having never covered a cake in icing before or stacking one. This is an amazing recipe each time I did it, it worked out perfectly. I did a 10inc base, 8inc middle and 6inc top tier (all chocolate). To change a recipe for different sized tins you need to work out the area of the tin, like high school maths. Pythagoras theorem for round tins. Then compare the original recipes area to your tins as a percentage and apply the percentage to the ingredients.

l-bray's picture

hi guys! i really need to ask this urgent question as i am intending to do this cake tomorrow for my parent's anniversary =)
if i use the amounts given to do a 30cm tin, how deep will it turn out please?
thank you

lucyclarecarter's picture

Please can someone send me the fillinf recipe for this cake - it looks stunning as a birthday cake.

carole34's picture

I would like to make this as the second tier of my sons wedding cake so want to use a 23cm tin. How do I scale it down and what would the cooking time be?

tamarynf's picture
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This is a perfect bottom teir! Easy to make and really delicious. I used a 28cm square cake but followed this recipe and it tastes and lOoks great.

minstrels38's picture

I'm making this cake for my friends wedding - did trial run and both fruitcake and lemon cake turned out great. I had the same with problems with the chocolate cake tho it came out crusty on top and around the side and sunk in the middle. I checked with some cooking experts (my Mum and Aunt!) and they both said that it's probably because I didn't cover the outside of the tin with paper this stops the sides cooking too quickly. I did everything else right and didn't open the oven door for over 2 hours so hopefully this is where I went wrong!! Fingers crossed it works ok - wedding is in July it does taste lovely tho!!

amelia-16's picture

I would like to use this recipe for a 10inch, 8inch and 6 inch wedding cake could you recommend quantities and oven temperatures aqnd timimgs. This would really be appreciated.

lelimey's picture
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I have some superb chocolate cake recipes but chose to make this as one of three cakes, I made this, the lemon and a vanilla with jam and buttercream instead of the fruit tier. This was superb, rich and sumptuous and stayed moist - really an absolutely brilliant cake. Will definitely make again any time a really good choccie cake is needed

kimmycupcake's picture

Just tried this recipe and it did not work for me at all I followed everything exactly but its way to sweet it exploded as there was way to much mixture and is dry and in some places crusty except the middle which took forever to cook i'm afraid I wont be using this recipe again.

carlystar's picture

Val, Becsy ans Amelia, did any of you use large eggs? The recipe is not clear on which size of egg to use. Maybe this could be the reason for the recipe working for some and not for others?

amelia-16's picture

After finding this recipe which sounded ideal,I read the comments and thought it perfect for my sons wedding cake. I usually am very successful with my baking. I followed the recipe to the letter with the best produce as directed and the how to instruction. On looking through my cooker window was pleased with the look. After the recommended time I brought out the cake and was so disappointed with the result. It was still wet inside and crusty to say the least on the top. I cannot put how dissapointed I am. Can you tell me why

becster86's picture

Can somebody tell me why my cake sunk in the middle? Did everything as recipe inserted skewer which came out clean top was crispy like brownie top looked at it 10 mins later & it had sunk!
Really want to do this for my wedding in 3 wks am going to try again wondered if anyone has got any suggestions?

valcarroll's picture

We have tried this as the full amount of ingredients twice and it tends to sink a little in the middle, is this right?

carlystar's picture

Could someone please tell me which sized eggs they have used for this recipe?