This week, Lucy is helping us to get ready for Mother’s Day with a huge tray of fudgy chocolate cake.
Ever since I started baking, I have been slightly obsessed by cakes made using vinegar. My obsession came with this particular Chocolate Cake recipe and has gone on ever since. I am always slightly puzzled by the chemistry of adding vinegar to a cake mixture, what it does to the cake and how the hell it doesn’t make the cake taste like your local fish and chip shop. In my constant quest to find yet another chocolate cake recipe for my collection, I discovered this Nana’s Chocolate Cake recipe via the Bon Appetit website, with thanks, and fell in love with it instantly.
I do love a cake with a bit of history and this cake is not actually my Nana’s Chocolate Cake but it belongs to the Alaina Sullivan’s from Bon Appetit’s Nana, bless her, whoever she is. I did, however, think this would be a lovely Mother’s Day recipe, especially as it had originated from someone’s Mother, albeit not one with anything to do with me. On a side note, as a Mother myself, I would be extremely pleased if someone made me this cake as a sign of appreciation on Mother’s Day, but I shan’t hold my breath waiting. This is a simple recipe, one bowl, kind of, apart from ones used to weigh things, followed by an absolutely amazing new icing recipe, which I will now be covering pretty much everything in from here on in. This icing is made using chopped milk or dark, or both, chocolates, hot evaporated milk and butter, not a cloud of icing sugar in sight. This creates a shiny, smooth ganache style icing which can be swirled and slathered to your hearts content. On top of the beyond *aaaggghhh* moist and fudge-like chocolate cake, these two are a match made in heaven.
I feel bad mugging in on someone else’s Nana’s recipe, but I couldn’t help myself, it’s such a good one. So treat the Mother in your life, this Sunday, to this divine Chocolate Cake, whoever she or he may be. Nothing says love like cake, especially one covered in so much shiny chocolate icing and sprinkles.
This recipe will appear on Lucy Loves later this week.
Nana’s Chocolate Cake Recipe
Makes a large rectangular cake, about 24 squares
You will need a stand mixer or hand mixer and a large bowl
- 180g soft butter or Stork
- 400g caster sugar
- 1 egg
- 325g plain flour
- 1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
- 50g cocoa
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 350ml brewed coffee or water
- 2 tablespoons vinegar
- 350g milk or dark chocolate, I used half of each
- 200 to 240ml evaporated milk, you will need less if you use more milk chocolate than dark
- 60g butter, chopped
- A pinch of salt
- Sprinkles, glitter, rose petals to decorate
Pre heat your oven to 160 degrees fan assisted and line a 9inch by 13inch rectangular swiss roll sized tray.
In your stand mixer or bowl and hand mixer beat the soft butter, caster sugar and the egg until lighter in colour and texture. In another bowl mix together the flour, bicarb, cocoa and salt.
Slowly add the dry ingredients to the butter and egg mixture then pour in the vanilla, brewed coffee or water and the two tablespoons of vinegar. Beat well until the batter is smooth. It will be quite a thinnish batter.
Pour this into your lined tin then bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean when poked in the middle. Leave to cool before removing from the tin.
While the cake is baking crack on with the icing as it will need to set. In your food processor, blitz the chocolate/s until a rubble like texture. Heat the evaporated milk in a pan or in the microwave until just simmering then pour over the chocolate and process until smooth. Add the salt and the butter in pieces, process again until smooth. Pour into a bowl or jug and leave to set. This will take anywhere from 15 minutes to an hour. You need it to be shiny and spreadable, don’t be tempted to put in the fridge or it will be too hard to spread.
Spread your cooled cake with the smooth icing, swirl, then top with the sprinkle of your choice. Cut into decadent slabs. Keep the cake for up to 4 days in an airtight tin.