Valentine chocolate mud cake.
250g plain dark chocolate pieces.
250g soft brown sugar.
100g double cream.
1 tablespoon instant coffee or orange zest.
2 tablespoons dark rum or orange liqueur.
200g plain flour.
50g self-raising flour.
50g cocoa powder.
Place the butter, chocolate, sugar, cream, coffee or zest, rum or orange liqueur in a heatproof bowl (large enough to hold all the rest of the ingredients) over a pan of steaming water. Heat in the steam (not on the boiling water) until all has melted and then set aside to cool.
Whisk in the eggs, one at a time and the mix should increase in volume.
Sieve the dry ingredients into the mix (about one third at a time) and gently fold in.
Place the mix in a prepared 23 cm spring-action loose-bottomed cake tin.
Cook in the middle of the oven 150C, Gas 2 for about 25-30 minutes. The top should be just forming a crust, the sides firming, the centre still soft under the crust and reaching 80C.
Remove and allow to cool and firm.
The coffee/run or orange/liqueur options are to cut through the richness of this cake which will not rise like a sponge but be more solid and gooey.
A metal draining board is good for conducting heat away from the mixing bowl or place in the fridge to cool.
I prepare the tin by buttering the base, covering with parchment paper, re-buttering the base and sides before dusting with flour.
Allow the cake to cool and firm for several hours/overnight and then gently loosen around the edges before releasing the sides of the tin. Place a flat plate on top of the cake, turn upside down and remove the metal base and then peel away the parchment paper. Place another plate on top of the cake (actually the bottom) and turn upside down again. Remove the first plate and the cake is ready to serve – even decorate if you wish.
If you are concerned about the fragility of the cake, put it in the fridge to firm more before removing from the tin. Take it out of the fridge to return to room temperature before serving. Cover if storing in the fridge to avoid drying out.
Serve the orange version with my Cointreau ice cream slices of orange or pears poached in the orange juice and vow to do more exercise for the rest of the year!
If you are resolute, it can keep in the fridge for up to 7/10 days.