Recipe for the perfect Chocolate Cake with a hint of coffee – top with Dark Chocolate Ganache


For the cake:
1½ tsp instant coffee granules
350ml boiling water
250g unsalted butter, cubed and room temperature
200g dark chocolate (preferably 70% cocoa solids), chopped
250g castor sugar
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
2 tsp vanilla extract
240g flour
2 tsp baking powder
30g cocoa powder
¼ tsp salt

For the ganache:
200g dark chocolate (preferably 70% cocoa solids), finely chopped
200ml double cream
1 tbsp golden syrup
1 tbsp butter, room temperature
fresh berries to serve (optional)

How to
Preheat your oven to 170ºC. Grease and line three 20cm round cake tins.

Dissolve the coffee granules in the boiling water in a large bowl. Add the butter and dark chocolate and mix until combined and smooth.

Add the castor sugar and whisk in by hand until dissolved. Add the eggs and vanilla extract and whisk again until everything is combined.

Sift in the flour, baking powder, cocoa powder and salt. Whisk again until you have a smooth, runny batter.

Divide the batter between the cake tins. Bake the cakes for 20-25 mins or until an inserted skewer comes out clean. Allow the cakes to cool in their tins for 15 minutes before removing them. Allow to cool completely before icing.

To make the ganache: Place the dark chocolate in a heatproof bowl. Place the double cream and golden syrup in a small saucepan and bring to boiling point while stirring.

Pour the hot cream mixture over the chopped chocolate. Leave to stand for 30 seconds then whisk together until the chocolate has almost all melted. Add the butter, then whisk again until the ganache is smooth. Leave to cool and thicken to a spreading consistency.

Place one cake layer on your serving plate. Spread a small amount of ganache over the top, then place another cake layer on top. Spread some more ganache evenly on the top of the second layer then place the third cake on top. Spread the remaining ganache on the top and sides of the cake. If it’s a very hot day place the iced cake in the fridge for an hour to set.

Decorate the cake with mixed fresh berries just before serving.

Cook’s notes:
The original recipe calls for the cake to be baked in a single 23cm round cake tin. I decided to bake mine in thinnish layers and made three 20cm cakes, but you could do either, or even two 20cm cake layers if you prefer.

You can replace the plain flour and baking powder with 240g self-raising flour as per the original recipe.

When it comes to icing the cake you can use the ganache when it’s still fairly runny for thinner, glossier ganache layers, or you can leave it until it is thicker and more spreadable. I prefer option 2 but it’s completely up to you.

Recipe courtesy of Cupcakes and Couscous – a food blog by Teresa Ulyate

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