I have a secret and I’m pretty sure I’m not the only one who keeps this quiet. I love baking, but, most of the time it never turns out quite how I envisaged it would. Getting all of a huff in the kitchen when the butter is still too cold, spilling the ingredients even when I’m being extra careful and being super paranoid checking the oven temperature is an awful lot of hard work for something that turns out too flat, not quite right or sinks in the middle. Cakes, I’m looking at you. Frankly, I’ve had enough of aiming for perfection and frowning at anything that dares to come out of the oven less than 100% correct, and if it tastes good who cares if it looks a bit skewiff? Enter my Perfectly Imperfect Chocolate Cake.
- 110g plain flour
- 40g cocoa powder
- 125g caster sugar
- 125g butter
- 2 eggs
- Drop vanilla extract
For the icing:
- 200g caramel chocolate bars
- 75ml double cream
Add the eggs, one at a time and mix until fully incorporated. If it curdles, add a bit of flour and it should all be ok.
Sift the flour and cocoa together into the sugar mix and fold the flour through.
Divide between two greased 18cm cake tins, smooth over and bake at 160C for 20-25 minutes or until cooked. I normally poke the top of the cake and check it springs back before I take it out of the oven.
Remove from the tin and leave to cool on a wire rack.
To make the icing, put a bowl over a pan of simmering water. Break up the caramel chocolate and add it to the bowl. Let it melt slowly. It will look a bit grainy and thick when it’s all melted so at this point, add the cream and mix all together really well until smooth.
Use the icing to sandwich the two cakes together then use the rest to spread over the top and outside edges.
I like an honest, slightly wonky, not polished cake; it’s more inviting, more tempting to cut in to. The whole point of this cake is that it is simple to make but tastes fantastic. No, it’s not the tallest cake in the world or the widest, or the one with the most layers but wait till you get a taste of that icing. This is the cake you bake when you want to don your apron and scratch that baking itch but it’s not about looks it’s all about taste; it’s perfectly imperfect.