Chocolate tea cake


Ideal for when you have friends tell you they're coming round on short notice, as I had last weekend! A no fuss cake with only basic ingredients needed, just add some berries and cream, or simply serve with a cup of tea or coffee.

Chocolate tea cake:
 180 g dark chocolate melted
130 g unsalted butter, soft
150 g plain flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
140 g sugar
6 medium eggs

Chocolate icing:
150 ml double cream
150 g chocolate

 Preheat the oven to 180 C. Melt the chocolate, stir until smooth and leave to cool.  Beat the butter and half the sugar to reach fluffy consistency, and whisk the egg yolks, one by one, beat well between each yolk until well incorporated. Then stir in the melted chocolate, sifted flour mixed with baking powder.

In a separate bowl whisk the egg whites until stiff peaks are formed and then add the other half of the sugar, whisk until the sugar is completely dissolved and fold into the chocolate mixture. Bake in  greased base -lined 23 cm tin for about 50 minutes. You may need to lower the temperature half way through.  Insert a skewer in the centre to check whether the middle is baked properly before taking it out of the oven. If not ready move the cake to the lower rack, cover with foil and bake for further 10 to 15 minutes.

While the cake is cooling down on a wire rack, get the icing ready: heath the cream, but do not boil it, add the chocolate, remove from the heat and stir. If the chocolate is not fully melted, put back on low heat for a short period of time, them remove and stir again until smooth and glossy.

You can glaze the cake with few spoons of melted jam of your choice, allow it to cool and pour the glaze over. Leave it to set in a cool place, do not keep it refrigerated, use an air-tight container and cool room instead.

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