- 200g good quality dark chocolate, about 60% cocoa solids
- 200g butter
- 1 tsp instant coffee granules
- 85g self-raising flour
- 85g plain flour
- ¼ tsp bicarbonate of soda
- 200g light muscovado sugar
- 200g golden caster sugar
- 25g cocoa powder
- 3 medium eggs
- 75ml buttermilk (5 tbsp)
- grated chocolate or curls, to decorate
- 200g dark chocolate (or milk if you don't want it to be as rich).
- 200ml double cream.
Firstly, prepare your cake tin and preheat your oven to 160 c (140 if you have a fan oven). Put the butter, chocolate and coffee granules mixed in with 125ml cold water into a microwavable bowl or a saucepan. Heat until melted.
Next, mix all the dry ingredients into a bowl. Beat together eggs into a bowl or cup and stir in the buttermilk. Add both the buttermilk mixture and the chocolate mixture into the dry ingredients. Fold it in gently so you don't knock out the air.
Put this in the oven for 1 hour and 25-30 minutes. Although keep an eye on it, because mine took less than that. After its cooled, split it into two (unless you baked it in two tins). I got a bit too confident and tried to cut it into three, and the whole top cracked into pieces - as you can see! It's not a strong cake because it's so moist, but because you cover it with ganache it doesn't matter too much if it cracks/breaks. After it came out of the oven, I whipped up some double cream to go in the middle.
To make the ganache, I heated up cream in a saucepan until it was just boiling. Have your chocolate ready in a separate bowl and pour the heated cream onto it. Leave it alone for a few minutes, and then begin to stir it together. It will look as though it's not coming together, but bare with it - as you can see from my photos it does start to look like ganache eventually!
It makes quite a lucious thick ganache so I poured it straight on and spread it on, but you can pop it in the fridge for it to thicken if yours is a bit runny.
This was my first time making a chocolate cage. They say to avoid white chocolate because its temperamental but mine worked just fine! My boyfriend chose the white cage.. dark may have been better :P
To make the cage, measure out some greaseproof so it fits around your cake and make it the height you want it. Melt some chocolate -I used about 100g for my cage. Pop it into a piping bag and pipe any design you like. Now you have to watch it - you don't want it to set completely so it cracks but you want it to start setting so that it loses its shine but can still bend. Wrap it around the cake and make sure you get it into the right position - it will smear if you move it! Pop it into the fridge until it sets.
Voila! Decorate it however you like. I made truffles to go on the top. To do this, use any extra ganache (or make more) and let it set in the fridge. Roll it into balls of your desired size, and dip into cocoa, sprinkles or melted chocolate. I then swirled extra ganache on top -both dark and white chocolate. May be a chocolate overload to some but to us it was amazing!