Thanks to incredibly skilled part-time baker Faith, of blog FaithBakes, for sharing this irresistible recipe. Faith's rich and decadent chocolate cake with a hint of coffee and dulse is guaranteed to make you popular with whomever you choose to share it.
Faith says, "this is a very soft, dark chocolate cake with an added hint of salty seaweed to round off the deep, slightly bitter chocolate. It can't be said that this cake is good for the waistline, but once in a while don't we all just need a proper piece of chocolate cake? Plus Mara's dulse seaweed seasoning is a vitamin-rich addition to take the edge off the guilt just a little!"
Note: if you can't find buttermilk, it's fine to use a 50/50 mix of full fat milk and plain yoghurt.
Makes 8-10 generous slices.
Time: 90 minutes
For the sponge
40g dark chocolate (at least 70% cocoa solids)
170ml hot brewed coffee (I used french press)
300g caster sugar
160g plain flour
60g cocoa powder
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
pinch salt (1/8 tsp)
1 tbsp dulse seaweed seasoning
2 medium eggs
90ml vegetable oil
170ml buttermilk, well-shaken
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
For the topping
125g dark chocolate (at least 70% cocoa solids)
1 tbsp amaretto (optional)
100g unsalted butter, cubed
2-4 tsp dulse seaweed seasoning
1. Turn on the oven at 170C / Gas Mark 4. Grease and line a 20cm (8in) spring-form tin or deep, loose bottomed tin with baking paper.
2. Finely chop the chocolate for the sponge and put into a heat proof bowl. Pour the hot coffee into the bowl with the chocolate. After letting it stand for a minute, stir the mixture gently to combine then leave it to cool slightly while you do the next steps.
3. In a large bowl sieve together the sugar, flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, salt and seaweed seasoning. Use a whisk and stir to evenly mix.
4. Using a free-standing mixer, or a large mixing bowl and an electric hand whisk, beat the eggs until they are pale and slightly frothy on the top. Add the oil, buttermilk, vanilla and chocolate/coffee to the bowl and mix again gently until combined.
5. With the mixer on a low speed, add the flour mixture a spoonful at a time. Once it is all in the mixture, scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl then beat on a medium speed for about 2 minutes.
6. Pour the batter into your prepared tin and cook for approximately 40 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. Once cooked, leave to cool completely in the tin.
7. While the cake is cooling, make your topping. Break up the chocolate into a heat proof bowl, add the amaretto (if using) and melt gently over a pan of simmering water. Once melted, remove the bowl from the pan and add the butter a cube at a time, stirring gently. You should end up with a smooth, glossy mixture; if the chocolate firms before you are finished adding butter, set it back over the simmering water for a minute until smooth.
8. Place a wire cooling rack over a baking tray. Once the cake is completely cool, turn it out of the tin upside down onto the wire rack (so the flat bottom is facing upwards). Depending on the temperature of your kitchen, the chocolate mixture should thicken slightly as it cools; put it in the fridge for 10 minutes to encourage it to thicken if necessary. Once it reaches this stage but is still pourable, pour it over the cake allowing it to flow down the sides. Neaten the sides with a palette knife, then leave until almost set.
9. Finally, sprinkle 2-4 tsp of Dulse seaweed seasoning across the top, depending how much you would like the flavour to come through, and allow it to set completely.
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