Saturday, 25 May 2013

Chocolate

After a week and a half of baking and tasting different chocolate layer cakes I finally found the perfect recipe.
 
 
It wasn't the pecan fudge cake of my previous post, nor the amaretti cake... not even the Mary Berry cake with white chocolate icing.

 
After my last post Annie suggested that what I might be looking for was her "best ever chocolate cake"... and she was right. It was wonderful.

 
I wouldn't be so arrogant to say I  improved the recipe because a best ever cake can't really get any better but  I made a couple of small changes and tweaks to enhance the flavour, did a second trial run on Thursday and knew I had my cake.

 
The First Bake Off challenge was this morning and along with 100 other entants I delivered my cake to the Cambridge School of Cookery. There were some amazing looking chocolate cakes and they were all so different. After a tense three hour wait we went back to collect the results...

 
and I've got through to the next round! Not only that, my cake was one of the top three with 9 out of 10 for both taste and texture. I think I'm really excited but I'm too tired to tell. All I have done is think chocolate all week... and when I have managed to get some sleep I've dreamt about it too. I know I don't want to make another chocolate cake for a very long time.

 
I can't show you the inside of my cake because I left it to be donated to a shelter for the homeless (we really have had quite enough cake for one week) but this is one I made earlier! And the recipe... (with many thanks to Annie):
 

Best Ever Chocolate Cake

315 g plain (all-purpose) flour
75 g  cocoa powder
2 level teaspoons bicarbonate of soda (not baking powder)
1 level teaspoon espresso coffee powder
½  teaspoon salt
3 large eggs
150 g  golden caster sugar
150g dark muscovado sugar
180 ml grape seed oil (or similar bland tasting oil)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
180 ml puréed tomatoes (a large can of tomatoes, run through the blender and then sieved will give you more than you need.)
80 ml butter milk

Sift together the flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, coffee powder and salt.
Separate the eggs. Beat the whites until they form stiff peaks.

Beat together the sugars, oil, vanilla extract, tomato purée, and egg yolks.
Fold in the sifted dry ingredients.
Stir in the butter milk and fold in the egg whites until everything is well combined.

Divide between two greased and lined 20 cm round tins and bake at Gas 4/180C/350F for 35 mins.
Fill and decorate as you please (Mine had a white chocolate buttercream filing and a dark chocolate ganache coating topped with chocolate shards)
 
And I promise you... not one person has guessed about the tomatoes!

33 comments:

  1. Wow! to the cake and many congratulations to you Gina. You must be thrilled with the results though having seen other examples of your cookery skills I am not surprised. I wonder what they have in store for the next challenge.
    Pureed tomatoes?! That's a surprise ingredient. I shall have to try the recipe and thankyou for posting it.

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  2. WELL DONE GINA, yes I am shouting
    so glad for you after all your hard work. Think it goes to prove what we were talking about.... I am chuffed to little mint balls for you.

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  3. That is a seriously fab looking cake. What do you do with all the practice cakes are your friends and family groaning under the weight?
    My son's work colleagues partner got to the last 200 on this year's GBBO and they were quite excited at the prospect of having to taste her pratice efforts - sadly it wasnt to be

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  4. What a marvellously beautiful cake and what a well-deserved result. Your standard of baking takes serious devotion. Many congratulations!

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  5. Congratulations! It looks amazing and obviously tasted so too. I'd never have thought of using tomatoes in a chocolate cake - might give this one a try when I have to bake for work next month.

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  6. Well done, it looks fantastic and it obviously tastes just as good. I hope you are ready to bake another one soon .......

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  7. I'm sure it tastes delicious, but, why tomatoes?

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  8. Well done Gina!!!!

    I'm so curious to know what it tastes like I think I'll have to make one! Maybe it will be my cake for the village fete :-)

    Good luck in the next round xx

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  9. Well done Gina. You are quite a woman in one way and another. In fact I think you must be Superwoman's sister!

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  10. Congratulation and good luck for the next round! Xx

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  11. Congratulations for getting through to the next round - you deserved it after all that hard work!

    Tomatoes? Really??!! I've got to give that a go!

    x

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  12. So pleased it worked for you, and I'm sure your tweaks were an improvement. It looks absolutely fabulous :D

    Good luck in the next round :D

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  13. Congratulations, Gina. And it is so generous of you to share your prize winning entry.

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  14. Wow! Your cake looks and I'm sure tastes fantastic. Good luck for the next stage.

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  15. Shock ingredient, but it obviously works. X

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  16. Fantastic Gina! No wonder you're all chocced out. Who would guess tomatoes in a chocolate cake? Makes you wonder who thought of it on the first place, unless it was your tweak.... Looking forward to following you through the next stage. Congratulations.

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  17. Wow! It looks amazing! Well done- what a great result. I have to ask though- can you really have too much chocolate cake? ;) x

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  18. Congratulations. It really does look superb.

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  19. Fantastic! Both the cake and the score! It looks wonderful! Yum!

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  20. HOOORAY fab news Gina and what a gorgeous looking cake. I would NEVER have guessed you could use tomatoes. I need to try this just to see how it all works together.....

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  21. That is one stonking cake! WELL DONE YOU.

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  22. Well done Gina! Looked amazing - and tomatoes? That IS a surprise ingredient, but it clearly does the trick.

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  23. That looks fabulous. Congratulations on a good result.

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  24. Fabulous, well done Gina. The cake looks gorgeous. Good luck with the next round.

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  25. Congratulations well done - that cake look out of this world.

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  26. You see, I said that you would wow the judges and you did!

    Good luck for the rest of the competition.

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  27. The cake looks fabulous! Congratulations on getting through. Onward and upward!

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  28. Well done, it looks great!

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  29. Well done Bake Off Queen. I knew you'd do it..... but how can you ever have too much chocolate....!!!

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  30. Congratulations Gina! Your cake looks stunning, no wonder it was in the top three. Good luck with the next round.

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  31. Congratulations! A cake with tomatoes in? I've just got to make it...well just as soon as I've lost the weight I've put on over the last week on holiday in Sardinia...

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  32. It does/ did look fab Gina and what a great result! Thanks for sharing the recipe, can't wait to give it a go and then tell everyone who declares it delicious (especially Amy) about the tomatoes!

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