I have many memories of cakes baked over the years for birthdays in our family. If you’ve been following this blog for a while you will have read my story about the Strawberry and Cream Sponge and seen the efforts that went into making the “Monkey Cake“. I can’t think of a time when we would have taken the easy route and purchased one. This probably stems from our love of being in the kitchen as much as it does from giving us a good excuse to make something sweet without feeling guilty about creating such a treat. Unlike biscuits or slices, cake just seems like it should be made and eaten on a special occasion.
This particular cake reaches back into the memories from when I was a teenager, it was a staple in my Mum’s catering company and turned up on many tables as something decadent as much as something that would tick restrictive diets or allergies. Being Gluten Free is merely a bonus. If you want some of the history of the cake check out the original post here created by LadyRedSpecs.
I created this cake recently in honor of celebrating a very special birthday early and I think its only fit to post the recipe on the actual birthday seeing as we were not able to be together today.
Happy Birthday Mum xxx
- 180g unsalted butter at room temperature
- 3/4 cup castor sugar
- 4 eggs separated at room temperature
- 180g good quality dark chocolate
- 180g raw hazelnuts w. skins blitzed into a fine nut meal
- 250g good quality dark chocolate
- 250ml pouring cream
hazelnuts to decorate cake.
Pre-heat your oven to 170c. Grease and line a 20cm round springform baking tin.
Melt the chocolate over a hot water bath and allow to cool slightly. Whilst this is happening cream your butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the egg yolks one at a time making sure that they are well combined. Add in the chocolate and hazelnut meal and mix.
In a separate bowl whisk your egg whites until they are soft peak. Fold 1/3 of the egg whites into chocolate mixture. Once combined add in remaining egg white, folding gently until just combined. Spoon mixture into baking tin and level right to the edges.
Bake for approximately 50-60 minutes or until the cake sets in the middle and a skewer can be removed cleanly. Remove from oven and allow to cool in the tin before removing.
For the ganache, place the cream into a small saucepan and heat over a medium heat until bubbles are just forming. Remove immediately and add chocolate, stirring only just enough to combine. Pour over cake and using a metal knife or palate knife smooth around edges. Having a glass of hot water to clean your knife as you go will help in this process of cleanly getting a good surface. Place the hazelnuts around the crown of the cake whilst the ganache is still warm. Allow to cool completely before serving.
This cake will keep for a few days.
Serve with double cream or a berry sauce.
Happy Baking and Happy Eating,