Indulgent Chocolate Cake
250g butter, softened
250g caster sugar
3 large eggs
200g self-raising flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
50g good quality cocoa powder
50g dark chocolate, grated
For the chocolate buttercream filling:
50g butter, softened
50g cocoa powder
120g icing sugar
2 tablespoons milk
For the ganache topping:
200g dark chocolate, broken into pieces
100ml double cream
1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees Celsius/Gas mark 4.
2. Grease and line 2 x 20cm cake tins.
3. In a mixer, beat the butter and sugar together and add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each one.
4. Sift in the flour, baking powder and cocoa powder and fold in with a spatula, taking care not to knock the air out.
5. Fold in the grated chocolate and the milk.
6. Divide the mixture evenly between the 2 prepared cake tins.
7. Bake in the oven for 20 minutes and the cakes are well risen.
8. Leave the cakes to cool in the tins for 5 minutes and then remove and place on a wire rack until completely cooled.
9. Make the ganache topping first as it needs a little time to cool and thicken. Place the chocolate pieces in a bowl with the butter and pour on the hot cream (heat in a microwave in 20 sec bursts, checking in between each).
10. Pour the cream on top of the chocolate and butter and whisk continuously until the ganache is smooth. You can heat it in the microwave for a few seconds if it cools before the chocolate is fully melted.
11. Leave to cool and thicken so that it is still easily spreadable.
12. To make the filling, beat the butter, icing sugar, cocoa powder and milk together until smooth and creamy.
13. Sandwich the two layers together with the chocolate buttercream and then spread the ganache over the top of the cake with a palette knife.
14. You can add decorations now or leave it as it is and serve with ice-cream or fresh cream.