This recipe is one from Nigela Lawsons website (minus the decoration) that we decided we could make a great Halloween cake with. Nigella carries a monthly cookalong which gives us a recipe to follow and post a picture of.
I couldn’t resist trying it out for ourselves as it just looked so rich. The kids wanted involved so they did the weighing, measuring and preparing and I did the oven bit. We used shop bought ready icing for the decoration, but I’m sure it would be easy enough to make.
The boys wanted a fab cake for Halloween night so it is now tucked up in a Tupperware tub to be brought out for THE night. A real spooky home-made Halloween cake.
- 50g Best Quality Cocoa Powder (Sifted. I used Green and Blacks)
- 100g Dark Brown Muscovado Sugar
- 250ml Boiling Water
- 125g Soft Unsalted Butter (Plus some for greasing.)
- 150g Caster Sugar
- 225g Plain Flour
- Half teaspoon Baking Powder
- Half teaspoon Bicarbonate of Soda
- 2 teaspoons Vanilla Extract
- 2 Large Eggs
- 125ml Water
- 30g Dark Brown Muscovado Sugar
- 175g Unsalted Butter (Cubed)
- 300g Best Quality Dark Chocolate (Finely Chopped)
- Preheat the oven to around 180C/Gas 4/350F. Nigella recommends to line the bottom of two sandwich tins approximately 8 inches in size with baking parchment paper and butter the sides. I don't have baking paper, so I improvised with a few sprays of cake release in my tins.
- In a large bowl, put a half cup of the muscovado sugar with the cocoa and the boiling water. Whisk it together until it is mixed and leave to the side.
- Cream butter and caster sugar until pale and fluffy.
- Mix the flour, baking powder and bicarb together in a bowl ready to use.
- Drop the vanilla extract drop by drop into the butter and sugar while still mixing. Quickly add in one egg and then add a scoopful of the flour mix and then the second egg. This is a new way of doing it for me as I tend to just throw them all in together.
- Add all the rest of the cake ingredients to the mixing bowl and finally fold in the cocoa mixture.
- Put half the mixture into each baking tin and cook in the oven for approximately 30 minutes or until a cake skewer comes out clean.
- When cooked, leave the tins to cook for a few minutes before turning out the cakes to cool.
- While the cake is cooking, take the frosting ingredients, ie the water, muscovado sugar and the butter into a pan on low heat to melt. When the mixture begins to bubble, take the pan off the heat and add in the chopped chocolate. Nigella recommends swirling the pan to hit the chocolate with heat. I forgot that bit, and just used a spatula and it seemed to turn out ok. Once the chocolate is melted, whisk until glossy and smooth.
- Leave the frosting for about an hour, but whisk it up a few times in that hour while the cakes are cooling and ready for the frosting.
- Take one of the cake halves and turn it top side down. Spread with a third of the frosting and put the second cake half on the top and spread the remaining frosting over the top and sides. If you want to create a swirly effect use a spatula. Some people will try for a smooth effect.