Denying the Inevitable

Feeding his way into your heart this month, James Claire cannot resist the urge any longer and goes for the one thing he has avoided though he knows it hits the spot every time: chocolate.

200g white sugar
85g brown sugar
115g unsalted butter
3 eggs
210g flour
60g cocoa powder
1 tspn bicarbonate soda
1 tspn salt
1 tspn baking powder
1 tspn vanilla essence
250ml milk

Chocolate Frosting
500g cream
500g dark chocolate
150g corn syrup

• Preheat the oven to 175° Celsius. Grease and line the base of three 20cm diameter cake pans.
• In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream together the white sugar, brown sugar and softened butter with the vanilla essence until light and creamy. Add the eggs one at a time and combine well between additions.
• Sift together the flour, soda, baking powder, salt and cocoa powder. Add half the dry ingredients to the butter mixture, then half the milk, followed by the second half of both. Mix to combine well.
• Divide the mixture between the three pans and bake for 25-30 minutes each, or until the top springs back when touched. Remove when baked and allow layers to cool in tins.
• To make the frosting, melt the cream, chocolate and corn syrup in the top of a double-boiled bowl over a saucepan of hot water, stirring as it heats.
• When all chocolate is melted, place the mixture into a shallow pan and place into the refrigerator. Stir the mix every 10 minutes over approximately 1 to 1 and 1?2 hours until it is thick enough to ice the cake and hold its shape.
• Join the layers with the icing and decorate the sides and top with the remaining chocolate frosting.
• Refrigerate the cake for 1 hour before serving.

February-2015_Food_03110g unsalted butter, melted
90g cocoa powder
200g sugar
2 eggs
2 tspns vanilla
60g plain (all-purpose) flour
pinch salt
100g dark chocolate chips
60g white raisins
80g walnuts, chopped

• Preheat oven to 175° Celsius.
• Grease a square cake pan and line with baking parchment.
• In a medium bowl combine melted butter and cocoa and stir until cocoa is dissolved.
• Add the sugar and mix well.
• Add the eggs one at a time and stir until well combined.
• Stir in vanilla, flour and salt until you no longer see any flour but do not overmix.
• Finally, fold in the chocolate chips, nuts and raisins. Spread in pan and bake for approximately 25 minutes.
• Cool completely before cutting into squares or serve warm with vanilla ice cream.

February-2015_Food_041½ litres water
450g milk powder
210g sugar
rosewater to taste
90g cornflour
180ml milk
200g dark chocolate

• Bring the water, milk powder, sugar and rosewater to the boil.
• Stir the cornflour and milk together and mix to a smooth paste.
• Whisk the cornflour mixture into the boiling liquid and boil 2-3 minutes.
• Remove from the heat and stir in the dark chocolate until completely melted.
• Pour immediately into serving dishes and dust liberally with grated pistachio nuts.
• Refrigerate overnight before serving.

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Hostess with the Mostess

February 2015: Editor’s Note