Friday 16 January 2015

Rich Dark Chocolate Cake {Recipe}

For those of you who may be thinking that I have forgotten how to bake, never fear, I am back!!

Today I baked for the first time since my surgery - 4 weeks of no baking!! I made a special cake for a very special occasion today, but I can't reveal any more about it just now, except to say that it started with my rich, moist, dark chocolate cake. Update: The cake is now revealed! - to see it, click here :)

This is by far my favourite chocolate sponge recipe, and it disappears in seconds every time I make it.    It works well as the base for many cakes, like black forrest, fudge, death by chocolate and ice cream; it works well with buttercream, ganache, cream and marshmallow, but it can also be eaten on its own, and is delicious with custard! This is the perfect chocolate sponge for simpler celebration cakes and can be tiered, if well supported - I have done 3 tiers successfully. It is no good, however for carved cakes (although it can be torted quite thinly if you are careful), and can crack and collapse if the icing and decorations get too weighty (don't ask how I know...)

So, here is my recipe for you to try. Click here to download the pdf for printing. I have also included a step-by-step photo tutorial below.

Chocolate Cake
Makes two layer 9” cake.

3 cups Flour
3 cups Sugar
1 cup and 2 TBSP Cocoa
3 tsp Baking Soda
1 tsp salt
3 Large Eggs
1 1/2 cups Buttermilk
1 1/4 cups Oil
2 tsp Vanilla

1 1/2 cups Boiling Water

Preheat oven to 145ÂșC
Line and grease two 9” round cake tins.

Combine dry ingredients, in mixer bowl.

My little helper :)

Add the eggs, buttermilk, oil and vanilla, and beat at medium speed until JUST combined. 

Benefit to being the helper ;)

Add the boiling water and mix immediately by hand until the batter is smooth (don’t over mix).

Pour into the two prepared 9” cake tins. Tap tins once, firmly on the counter to reduce large bubbles in the mix.

Bake for 60 mins, until the cake just begins to pull away from the sides of the tin, and a skewer inserted comes out clean.

Allow to cool in the tins for 10 minutes, then turn out onto cooling racks.

Once the cakes are completely cool, tops can be levelled (if necessary) and cakes can be filled, stacked and decorated.

 Happy Baking!


  1. Yum! That looks divine. Thank you for the recipe.

    1. Thank you Kath xx I hope you have fun making it, and even more eating it ;)

  2. Glad to see you are baking again, how is your arm?

    1. Thanks Jenny. My arm is still very sore and motion is still limited, but I am just so bored! I decided I just HAD to do some baking, so I chose something that wouldn't be too taxing for my arm.

  3. Your cake looks delicious! How many cups of batter does your recipe make, because your cake layers look tall!

    - Jimmy

    1. Thank you Jimmy. I'm not actually sure! I like to make quite tall cakes. I usually torte the sponges then layer them 3 or 4 tall. Sometimes I split the batter between 3 tins as well. This recipe scales up and down really easily too, so you could reduce it to 2 cups flour, 2 cups sugar, 3/4 cups cocoa, 2 eggs, etc.

  4. My Mum (Jeanette Saltzman) sent me this link and I’ve made this chocolate cake to the delight of many! It’s my very favorite, thank you for sharing. Do you have a vanilla cake recipe as good as this chocolate cake? I’ve never been able to find one I like.
    -Michelle (Saltzman) Pardoe

    1. Hi Michelle. I am so pleased to hear this - it’s my favourite recipe too!
      It is very hard to make a vanilla cake of the same quality, since the cocoa is what makes the texture/moistness so good.
      This is my favourite vanilla recipe though:


      1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter
      1 3/4 cups sugar
      4 large eggs plus 2 large egg yolks
      1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
      2 2/3 cups plain flour
      1/3 cup corn flour
      1 tablespoon baking powder
      1/2 teaspoon fine salt
      1 1/2 cups buttermilk

      Bring cold ingredients to room temperature. Butter should be soft enough to hold a thumbprint but still keep its shape. In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat butter and sugar on high until light and fluffy, about 6 minutes.
      Beat in 4 eggs plus 2 yolks, one at a time, until combined. Beat in vanilla extract.
      In another large bowl, whisk together flour, corn flour, baking powder, and salt. With mixer on low, add 1/3 the flour mixture to butter mixture, beating to combine.
      Beat in 3/4 cup buttermilk, another 1/3 the flour mixture, another 3/4 cup buttermilk, and remaining flour mixture until just combined. Scrape down bowl as needed.

      Bake at 170°C for 30 minutes.

      Moisten with syrup if not being eaten within 48 hours.

      Happy baking!
      Elaine x

      P.S. Please say “Hi” to your Mum and Dad for me, and tell them we miss them!

  5. Thank you!! It’s very kind of you to share