Recipe: Chocolate Cake for Eurovision Semi-Finals

I was going to write a nice sensible post next, the start of a series on basics which aren’t as basic as they are supposed to be.  In honour of Carême, it was going to be about bechamel sauce.

But it’s Friday night, and I spent the whole day at work absolutely craving chocolate cake.  So chocolate cake there had to be.  This is an adapted Nigella recipe (mostly adapted so that it matches the ingredients I had on hand). The amounts of raspberries are a little approximate, but you can never have too many raspberries with your chocolate.  If in doubt, add more.

Of course, what with the Eurovision semi-finals on TV and my penchant for edible glitter, it was necessary that any chocolate cake have a suitable amount of bling…

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For the cake

175g unsalted butter, softened
200g caster sugar
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
200g plain flour
1tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
40g cocoa
150 ml sour cream
150g frozen raspberries, crushed up a bit

For the icing
75g unsalted butter
180g chocolate
300g icing sugar
1 tbsp golden syrup
50ml sour cream
100ml cream
50g frozen raspberries, crushed up a lot

Now what will you do with it?

Preheat oven to 180°C (conventional), and line the bases of two 20cm round tins with baking paper.

Cream butter and sugar, mix in eggs and vanilla.  Add dry ingredients and mix well, followed by sour cream.  Finally, mix in the crushed raspberries.  Scrape the whole lot into the two pans.

Bake 35 minutes, or until the cake passes the skewer test.

Let cool in tin ten minutes before turning out to cool completely.

To make the icing, melt together the chocolate and butter with the raspberries (this icing will be a little lumpy, but it’s worth it).  Let cool a little and add the golden syrup and creams.  Stir into the sifted icing sugar, and allow the whole mix to cool for a bit (so that it isn’t going to run off the cake when you put it on).

Place one cake on a large serving plate.  Spread all over with chocolate icing, and put the other cake on top.  Spread the top and sides of the cake with the rest of the icing.  You probably have too much icing.  If you are sensible, you will not use all of it.  I am not sensible, and I used every last skerrick.

Decorate with edible glitter, edible spraypaint, gold-covered chocolate hearts, silver cachous or whatever tacky shiny stuff you have on hand.

Watch in front of Eurovision to assuage the pain of the fact that they didn’t let the three best songs through to the finals (Norway, Armenia and Croatia were robbed, I tell you).  Or even the magnificently  silly one from Portugal.

Oh, yum.

And the grand final is yet to come… are you scared yet?

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