This moist chocolate cake is laced with rum, then filled and covered with a glossy chocolate icing that melts in the mouth. It is irresistible to chocoholics, and can be served as an afternoon cake, or as a pudding with single cream.

200 g (7 oz) plain chocolate (39 per cent cocoa solids)

100 g (4 oz) cubed unsalted butter

3 large eggs, separated

100 g (4 oz) dark muscovado sugar

50 ml (2 fl oz) dark rum

75 g (3 oz) sifted self-raising flour

50 g (2 oz) ground almonds

FOR THE FILLING AND ICING

225 g (8 oz) plain chocolate (39 per cent cocoa solids)

100 g (4 oz) diced unsalted butter

4 tablespoons apricot jam

FOR THE CHOCOLATE GANACHE (OPTIONAL)

175 g (6 oz) plain chocolate (39 per cent cocoa solids)

4 tablespoons single cream

50 g (2 oz) diced butter

2 large egg yolks

1 tablespoon dark rum

1 Pre-heat the oven to 180°C/Fan 160°C/Gas 4. Grease a 20 cm (8 in) deep round cake tin then line the base with baking parchment.

2 Break the chocolate into pieces and melt with the butter gently in a bowl set over a pan of hot water, stirring occasionally, then allow to cool slightly. Put the egg yolks and the sugar into a large bowl and whisk until pale and creamy. Add the cooled chocolate mixture and the rum and mix well. Gently fold in the flour and the ground almonds.

3 In a separate bowl, whisk the egg whites until stiff but not dry, then lightly fold into the mixture. Turn into the prepared tin and gently level the surface.

4 Bake in the pre-heated oven for about 45 minutes or until well risen and the top of the cake springs back when lightly pressed with a finger. Leave to cool in the tin for a few minutes then turn out, peel off the parchment and finish cooling on a wire rack.

5 To make the filling and icing, break the chocolate into pieces and melt gently in a bowl set over a pan of hot water, stirring occasionally. Add the cubed butter and stir until the mixture has the consistency of thick pouring cream. Slice the cake in half horizontally and use a little of the icing to fill it. Warm the apricot jam then push through a sieve. Brush this over the cake top and sides and allow to set. Smooth the icing over and leave to set.

6 To make the chocolate ganache (if using), break the chocolate into pieces and melt with the cream in a bowl set over a pan of hot water, stirring occasionally. Cool slightly then beat in the butter a little at a time. Beat in the egg yolks and rum and then leave until cool and firm, stirring occasionally. When firm enough to hold its shape, spoon into a piping bag fitted with a star nozzle and pipe rosettes of the ganache to decorate the cake.

Read more: How to Prepare an Iced Fairy Cakes

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