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Chocolate Cake with Almonds

Chocolate Almond Cake

choc cake texture
I’ve spent a while getting this right and it is now ready to be released into the blogosphere. This is really delicious, works every time and can be adapted.

6oz Butter
6oz light soft brown sugar (or caster sugar)
3 large eggs
4 drops vanilla extract
2oz cocoa powder (Green&Blacks; Islington chocolatier, Paul A. Young did sell the best cocoa ever – but won’t sell it anymore – if you ever read this Mr Young – please reinstate it)
1oz plain flour (Italian ‘00’ is v good as very fine)
4oz ground almonds (even better to grind your own)
100g melted 70% chocolate (Divine fairtrade is v good)

Big dollop of nice Yeo Valley double cream (about 2 dessertspoons)

Optional: Handful of raisins soaked in Grand Marnier (or brandy)

Icing:
2oz dark chocolate
½ oz butter
2-3 dessertspoons icing sugar

Method:

1.    Beat softened butter and sugar together; add vanilla and eggs one by one.

2.    Sift in the cocoa and flour and fold into mix.

3.    Add almonds, cream and melted chocolate (add raisins if using).

4.    Pour into a buttered and lined 9” high sided round tin (loose-bottomed is easiest).

5.    Bake in the middle of oven for 30-35 minutes at 160˚C (A knife should come out of the cake fairly clean – but you want it a bit squashy).

6.    Leave in tin and after about 10 minutes splash a bit of cold water over surface of cake (this keeps the surface soft).

7.    Melt butter and chocolate, then mix in sifted icing sugar.

8.    Use a palate knife to smooth the icing over the cake in a thin layer.

Varying it:

  • Add about 2 dessertspoons of very, very strong coffee to the icing (might need a little more icing sugar).
  • Sprinkle toasted almonds flakes onto chocolate icing.
  • Star Anise – leave 3 ‘stars’ to soak in as little hot water as possible to soften – add to melting chocolate with the liquid and use in the main body of the cake
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