Saturday, July 18, 2009
Chocolate fudge cake
Do you ever buy a food magazine just because you are taken by the photo of the dish on the cover? I have to blushingly confess to this habit; recently, I purchased Australian Gourmet Traveller because of the gorgeous picture of pink macarons on the front cover. While I am a subscriber to Australian Good Food, I opened it in double quick time when I saw the magnificent chocolate cake on the cover of the August edition, and I knew that I had to make it.
Now, the cake that you see in my pictures bears only a passing resemblance to the one on the cover of Australian Good Food, because when I went to make the frosting, I realised that I was clean out of butter. Not in the mood to venture out for more, I used water icing instead, decorated gaily with Nerds. This was functional, but made the cake less luscious in appearance than the cousin that inspired it. Oh well, it still tasted good!
The cake is called "Easiest ever chocolate fudge cake", but unless you make the fudge icing, it is not really fudgy at all; in fact, it is disappointingly similar to a zillion other recipes for chocolate cake that I have tried. It was no better or worse, just not striking. Such is the power of the picture - I was hoping for an amazingly moist chocolate cake, and ended up with a fairly ordinary, sandy textured chocolate cake. I figure that the virtue of my version of the cake is that it was less calorific - the fudge icing contains some serious quantities of butter and chocolate!
However, don't take this as a negative; it is a perfectly good chocolate cake recipe if you are looking for a basic crowd pleaser that is not out of the ordinary. The recipe, including the original fudge frosting (in case you are more organised than me and actually have enough butter to make it) is as follows:
1 1/2 cups self raising flour
1/2 cup cocoa
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/4 cups brown sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
75g melted dark chocolate
200g icing sugar
200g dark chocolate, melted
Preheat your oven to 180 degrees Celsius, and grease and line two 20cm round cake tins.
Put the flour, cocoa, baking powder, sugar, butter, eggs, vanilla and melted chocolate into a food processor and process until smooth. (The authors state that if your mixture is too thick, add 2-3 tablespoons cold water and pulse through the batter.)
Spoon the batter evenly between the two prepared cake pans, smooth the tops, and bake in the preheated oven for 35-40 minutes or until cooked through when tested with a skewer. Remove the cakes from the oven and cool in the tins for 5 minutes before turning out onto a wire rack to cool completely.
Place the butter and icing sugar in a food processor and process until combined. Pour in the melted chocolate and pulse until smooth.
Spread half the frosting on one half of the cake, and top with the second half. Spread the remaining frosting over the top of the cake.
Slice and enjoy!
I liked my version with the water icing and Nerds; the tangy Nerds contrasted nicely with the sweetness of the icing and the cake. It also looked cheery and colourful, so although it is the wallflower to the Australian Good Food version, it sure tasted good.