I’ve made several chocolate cakes from scratch, many have been good, but none have really been “the one”, that keeper that everyone in the family liked. I recently made Nigella’s Old Fashioned Chocolate Cake. That was very good, and the frosting was pure amazingness, but after making this Chocolate Fudge Cake, I think we may have found the one!
I decided to make this cake for Father’s Day this year and I’m really glad that I did. Everyone loved it, perfectly moist and my husband loved the frosting. I originally saw this in one of Nigella’s book, I just don’t remember which one. I checked about 5 of them out from the library at once and before I knew it they were due back. So I went through and googled the ones I wanted to make and bookmarked them. Turns out this was from Nigella Bites. This was one of them.
HOWEVER, whoever added this recipe to the Food Network website definitely had to have typed the baking time wrong. It says 45-50 minutes and I knew that was impossible. So I baked the cake for 30 minutes and it was perfect. The only slight adaptation that I made was to use 5 ounces of bittersweet chocolate and one ounce of unsweetened. I did that because Nigella’s recipe suggests using a minimum of 70% cocoa solids, but I only had 60%. So I improvised :) I did buy some Lindt extra dark chocolate yesterday so I can make this again, and this time it’s 85% cocoa solids. Looking forward to seeing if there’s a difference.
When I frosted this cake I chose to go with a smooth finish, then I ran an icing spatula up from the bottom vertically to create the lines on the sides. For Father’s Day I topped the center with Milk Duds, hubby’s favorite candy, and poked in a few decorations. Delicious!
Nigella’s Chocolate Fudge Cake
slightly adapted from Nigella Bites
2 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
1/3 cup light brown sugar
1/4 cup best-quality cocoa powder
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons sour cream
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
3/4 cup unsalted butter, melted and cooled
1/2 cup canola oil
1 1/3 cups chilled water
6 ounces bittersweet chocolate, minimum 70 percent cocoa solids
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
1 3/4 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
For the cake:
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter and line the bottom of 2 (8-inch) cake pans.
In a large bowl, mix together the flour, sugars, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt. In another bowl or wide-necked measuring cup whisk together the eggs, sour cream and vanilla until blended. Using a standing or handheld electric mixer, beat together the melted butter and corn oil until just blended (you’ll need another large bowl for this is using the hand mixer; the standing mixer comes with its own bowl), then beat in the water. Add the dry ingredients all at once and mix together on a slow speed. Add the egg mixture, and mix again until everything is blended and then pour into the prepared pans.
Bake the cakes for 25 to 30 minutes, or until a cake-tester comes out clean. Cool the cakes in their pans on a wire rack for 15 minutes, and then turn the cakes out on the rack to cool completely.
For the icing:
Melt the chocolate in the microwave – 2 to 3 minutes on medium should do it – or in a bowl sitting over a pan of simmering water, and let cool slightly.
In another bowl beat the butter until it’s soft and creamy and then add the sifted confectioners’ sugar and beat again until everything’s light and fluffy. Gently add the vanilla and chocolate and mix together until everything is glossy and smooth.
Sandwich the middle of the cake with about a quarter of the icing, and then ice the top and sides, too, spreading and smoothing with a rubber spatula.