… I am very slowly getting back into my blogging stride after the usual beginning of the year #bloggerslump. I’ve met very few bloggers who don’t suffer from the underwhelming month of January. I think we spend so much time devoted to Christmas that when January eventually does comes knocking all we want to do is hide under the duvet – all our talent and creativity and once-remembered love for cooking just a distant memory. It’s not like we don’t still love food, believe me, I still yearn for the big bowls of soup and stews that any normal, Northern hemisphere human craves at this time of year, it’s just that I don’t want to make it myself, let alone get the camera and lighting equipment out, photograph plates of food, write about it in the blog and do the whole social media dance. No, I want to lay prone, Nero style and have platters of decadence laid in front of me and dangled into my mouth. Is this too much to ask? The love for blogging has, thus far, always come back. So much so that this morning, having spent yesterday in Glasgow and a week running around like a headless chicken, instead of languishing in bed like a normal person, i’m up and in the kitchen and thinking about what i’m going to cook for the blog. My mind filling with ideas and my fingers eager to start typing… I do hope you’ll allow me to indulge…
chocolate honey fudge cake with chocolate orange fudge icing
I thought that with Valentines Day just around the corner I ought to post something chocolatey just in case anyone out there wanted to celebrate their love with a chocolate cake. Speaking of love, I’m really not a big lover of chocolate cake, well at the very least it wouldn’t be my first choice of cake if presented with an array of cake. I remember so may over-sweet and sickly chocolate cakes for Birthdays as a child. It was usually the teeth-grindingly sweet icing that did it for me… you know that feel where a headache starts to form as the fork enters the mouth… but I do get it. I do love chocolate and I do have a sweet tooth. So firstly this cake combines my two great chocolate loves, chocolate and orange. Was there ever a lovelier combination? Obviously I’m not using an orange oil here that you would normally find in the divine Terry’s Chocolate Orange but i’m using a butt-load of orange zest which pretty much does the trick and cuts through the sweetness of the honey and chocolate which work so gloriously together to create such a fudgy and dense cake. Secondly the cake is thick and heavy. Two things you don’t usually associate with a good sponge cake but the large amount of butter and chocolate means that it’s more like the density of a brownie than a cake which of course also means you can pick up a whole slice with one hand without fear of it crumbling which quite frankly can be no bad thing…
for the cake
- 120g dark chocolate
- 275g light brown muscovado sugar
- 225g soft butter
- 125 mil runny honey
- 3 large free-range eggs
- 225 grams self-raising Homepride flour
- 1 tablespoon cocoa powder
- 250 mil boiling water
for the buttercream chocolate fudge icing
- 100g milk chocolate
- 150g butter
- 300g icing sugar
- 100mil runny honey
- the zest of one large orange
preheat the oven to 180°C and butter and line 2 18cm loose-bottomed cake tins
start by melting the chocolate for the cake. I use the microwave on low, checking it regularly but feel free to go the trad route and suspended over a pan of simmering water. Set aside to cool slightly.
beat together the sugar and soft butter until airy and creamy, and then add the runny honey. Add one of the eggs, beating it in with a tablespoon of the flour, and then the other egg with another tablespoon of flour. Fold in the melted chocolate, and then the rest of the flour.
add the cocoa pushed through a sieve and last of all, beat in the boiling water. Mix everything well to make a smooth batter and pour into the prepared tins.
bake on the same shelf for 35-40 mins, though check the cake after 25 minutes and if it is catching cover the top lightly with foil and check every 5 minutes.
let the cakes cool completely in the tins on a rack – this will add to the fudginess of the cakes!
to make the buttercream icing, again, melt the chocolate and set aside, then in a large bowl beat the butter until soft and add the sugar, a tablespoon at a time until it becomes thick and glossy, now beat in the orange zest
remove your cakes from their tins and place the bottom layer of your fudge cake on your cake stand and spread a generous spoonful of the currently white buttercream onto this layer, then place the second layer of the cake on top and set aside
now return to the icing mixture and add the honey, chocolate and hot water and beat in until you have a silky buttercream… you have to work fast now as the icing will begin to harden quickly
spread the icing all over the cake – I like to go for a ‘rough n ready’ natural look but of course feel free to be as fancy as you like
I am of course linking this cake with the wonderful We Should Cocoa bloggers linkup hosted by Choclette over at Tin and Thyme…
eat and of course enjoy and don’t forget to check out my instastory on a Sunday which I will try and do every Sunday if I can…