Ultimate chocolate cake topped with chocolate curls

Ultimate chocolate cake

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(1194 ratings)

Prep: 30 mins - 40 mins Cook: 1 hr - 1 hr, 30 mins Plus baking and cooling time

Easy

14 slices

Indulge yourself with this ultimate chocolate cake recipe that is beautifully moist, rich and fudgy. Perfect for a celebration or an afternoon tea

Nutrition and extra info

  • un-iced and undecorated

Nutrition: Per serving

  • kcal541
  • fat35g
  • saturates20g
  • carbs55g
  • sugars40g
  • fibre2g
  • protein6g
  • salt0.51g
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Ingredients

    For the chocolate cake

    • 200g dark chocolate (about 60% cocoa solids), chopped
      Dark chocolate soup pots with double cream in spoons

      Dark chocolate

      dahk chok-o-let

      Dark chocolate means the shiny, dark-reddish brown treat produced from the cacao bean, theobroma…

    • 200g butter, cubed
      Butter

      Butter

      butt-err

      Butter is made when lactic-acid producing bacteria are added to cream and churned to make an…

    • 1 tbsp instant coffee granules
    • 85g self-raising flour
    • 85g plain flour
    • ¼ tsp bicarbonate of soda
      Bicarbonate of soda

      Bicarbonate of soda

      Bicarbonate of soda, or baking soda, is an alkali which is used to raise soda breads and full-…

    • 200g light muscovado sugar
    • 200g golden caster sugar
    • 25g cocoa powder
    • 3 medium eggs
    • 75ml buttermilk
      Buttermilk pancake mixture in bowl with whisk

      Buttermilk

      buh-ter-mill-k

      There are two types of buttermilk. Traditional buttermilk is a thin, cloudy, slightly tart but…

    • 50g grated chocolate or 100g curls, to decorate
      Chocolate

      Chocolate

      chok-o-let

      Chocolate as we know it in pressed

    For the ganache

    • 200g dark chocolate (about 60% cocoa solids), chopped
      Dark chocolate soup pots with double cream in spoons

      Dark chocolate

      dahk chok-o-let

      Dark chocolate means the shiny, dark-reddish brown treat produced from the cacao bean, theobroma…

    • 300ml double cream
    • 2 tbsp golden caster sugar

    Method

    1. Heat the oven to 160C/ fan140C/ gas 3. Butter and line a 20cm round cake tin (7.5cm deep).

    2. Put 200g chopped dark chocolate in a medium pan with 200g butter.

    3. Mix 1 tbsp instant coffee granules into 125ml cold water and pour into the pan.

    4. Warm through over a low heat just until everything is melted – don’t overheat. Or melt in the microwave for about 5 minutes, stirring halfway through.

    5. Mix 85g self-raising flour, 85g plain flour, ¼ tsp bicarbonate of soda, 200g light muscovado sugar, 200g golden caster sugar and 25g cocoa powder, and squash out any lumps.

    6. Beat 3 medium eggs with 75ml buttermilk.

    7. Pour the melted chocolate mixture and the egg mixture into the flour mixture and stir everything to a smooth, quite runny consistency.

    8. Pour this into the tin and bake for 1hr 25 – 1hr 30 mins. If you push a skewer into the centre it should come out clean and the top should feel firm (don’t worry if it cracks a bit).

    9. Leave to cool in the tin (don’t worry if it dips slightly), then turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely. Cut the cold cake horizontally into three.

    10. To make the ganache, put 200g chopped dark chocolate in a bowl.  Pour 300ml double cream into a pan, add 2 tbsp golden caster sugar and heat until it is about to boil.

    11. Take off the heat and pour it over the chocolate. Stir until the chocolate has melted and the mixture is smooth. Cool until it is a little thicker but still pourable.

    12. Sandwich the layers together with just a little of the ganache. Pour the rest over the cake letting it fall down the sides and smooth over any gaps with a palette knife.

    13. Decorate with 50g grated chocolate or 100g chocolate curls. The cake keeps moist and gooey for 3-4 days.

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    Comments, questions and tips

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    jenniefood's picture
    jenniefood
    13th Jul, 2018
    5.05
    Does life get much better? Not only do my kids love this, they only get to eat it if they agree to keep their rooms tidy for a week before:-)
    Mina Katouzian
    25th Jun, 2018
    5.05
    Perfectly delicious, a real treat and looked amazing. I found it easy to make but I too tried to make it in two tins but it didn't work out so well, it was too crumbly and soft in the middle. So I then remade it in one tin and I sliced it in half. Not into thirds as it was a little delicate and crumbly so didn't want to risk it. The outcome was prefect. I topped mine with chocolate sprinkles, chocolate hearts and rasberries. The cake goes really well with a dollop of vanilla icecream.
    paula1961
    30th Mar, 2018
    5.05
    Just made this as my Easter Cake... I’m no master baker but it came out perfectly. I cooked it in one loose bottom tin for 1 hr 20 I think it could of been reduced by at least 5 - 10 min. I only cut it into two but was plenty deep enough for three. I used Lidl plain fair trade 60% chocolate, reduce both sugars to 160g each & made my own butter milk by adding 1tbls malt vinegar to the milk. Let it cool in the tin, I found it really easy to handle. Made the ganache to the recipe & decorated with mini eggs & malteser bunnies.
    Amy3897
    14th Mar, 2018
    3.05
    I made this and overall it turned out ok following instructions. However there is way too much sugar in this recipe and was far too sweet. I have a sweet tooth but I may as well have been eating pure sugar! There is double the sugar than flour/fat etc which isnt usual. I will be trying this recipe again cutting down the sugar as it was a nice chocolate cake that tasted of chocolate which is difficult to come by.
    Mercedes Bull's picture
    Mercedes Bull
    7th Mar, 2018
    5.05
    I made this Cake for my Cousin's Birthday and it went down a treat! It is much more Brownie like in consistency. For the ganache, I mixed equal parts Dark Chocolate with Milk Chocolate. For decoration, I used a combination of Cadbury's Flake (crushed) and fresh Strawberries! I would be careful not to refrigerate this as I stupidly did and it went very hard and chewy!
    amakfood
    4th Mar, 2018
    3.05
    Fell apart when moving it onto the cake stand. Looked a mess. A beautiful and delicious mess but a mess nevertheless. I baked in 2 tins (40-45mins) , so perhaps baking in one tin for the full1.5hrs makes it a bit dryer and hence less likely to fall apart. If I made this again, I’d make it in a bigger square tin, and glaze it with ganache just on the top (after it’s been moved onto the cake stand). But as others have said - the taste is incredible!
    Fullenglish
    3rd Mar, 2018
    5.05
    Iv'e made this cake about 5 times. If you like chocolate, this recipe is first class. Iv'e even made it with milk chocolate and it works but in my opinion dark chocolate is just right. I also used bourneville because I like the taste.
    italianwifey
    1st Mar, 2018
    5.05
    Brownie...cake... who cares, it's delicious! Easy to make and even easier to eat:-)
    sharono
    4th Feb, 2018
    5.05
    This is a 5 star ++++ cake. Just the best. It's a pleasure to make and a joy to eat.
    Taffytyke
    28th Jan, 2018
    5.05
    I've made this lots of times, still the best chocolate cake recipe out there. I keep it simple and just cut in half. Rich and gloriously moreish. You won't go wrong with this one.

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    goodfoodteam's picture
    goodfoodteam
    8th Dec, 2017
    Buttermilk is available in larger supermarkets in the dairy section. However if you don't have access to this then you can make your own, simply add a little under 1 tsp of lemon juice to 75ml full-fat milk and set aside for 10 mins. It will curdle into a thick mixture, then it's ready to use.
    Redtory
    16th Sep, 2017
    1.05
    How do stop it from crumbling it's impossible to handle just falls apart.Finished with a crumbling mess.
    goodfoodteam's picture
    goodfoodteam
    17th Sep, 2017
    We're sorry to hear your cake didn't turn out well. It's hard to know what happened here. It's essential to weigh all the ingredients using good scales, to make sure the cake is fully cooked according to step 5 and to leave the cake in the tin to cool down. If you take the cake out of the tin too soon, it may not be firm enough and can crumble. Hope this helps if you decide to try it again.
    Jumanas Cakes M...
    14th Sep, 2017
    5.05
    Thank you Angela love this recipe. Taste is awesome and it's easy to make. My question is if cake doesn't come out perfectly round and straight on the sides. It shrinks from the top. Is there anything I can do to keep it in shape? Because when I sandwich two I then have to trim sides. Thanks...
    goodfoodteam's picture
    goodfoodteam
    17th Sep, 2017
    If you want a straighter appearance, you can flip the top layer over so that the bottom of the cake is the top. Fill in the gaps with the icing. Hope that helps!
    Seren star's picture
    Seren star
    27th Aug, 2017
    Can I add vanilla extract
    goodfoodteam's picture
    goodfoodteam
    28th Aug, 2017
    Thanks for your question. Yes, you could add vanilla extract, although we have found the coffee brings out the flavour of the chocolate very well.
    Evelyn_1234
    21st Jul, 2017
    Hi, Can I reduce the amount of a sugar but keeping the other ingredients the same amount in this recipe? Thanks.
    goodfoodteam's picture
    goodfoodteam
    31st Jul, 2017
    Unfortunately changing the quantities in cake recipes will affect the outcome so we would not recommend reducing the sugar. We have a low sugar chocolate cake recipe here which you could cover in ganache as an alternative: https://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/squidgy-chocolate-sandwich-cake
    Geomix
    15th Jul, 2017
    It's me again... sorry, it's not sugar paste but fondant I want to cover the cake with! The translator mistranslated!!!

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