Friday, 3 February 2012

Choc-Chip Pound Cake with Cajeta and Chocolate Cream

Days at the beach are made even better when you come home, shake off the sand, wash off the sunscreen and stretch out on the sofa with a big slice of cake.

Choc-Chip Pound Cake

For the Cake:
250g unsalted butter, softened
250g caster sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 eggs
250g plain flour, sifted
150g chopped dark chocolate
60ml buttermilk
125ml cajeta

For the Cream:
250ml thickened cream
1 - 2 teaspoons cacao powder

For the Ganache:
125 dark chocoalate, chopped
60g unsalted butter, chopped
25ml water

Make the Cake:
Preheat the oven to 160 degrees C.  Grease and line the base and sides of a 20cm round cake pan.  Set aside.

Place the butter, sugar and vanilla in the bowl of an electric mixer and beat for 10-12 minutes or until light and creamy. (I know that sounds like a long time, but it really does make a difference to the final result).

Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add the flour and beat well to combine. Fold through the chopped chocolate and the buttermilk.

Spoon the mixture into the prepared cake pan.  Drizzle the cajeta over the batter and marble it in with a butter knife.  Bake for 45-50 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. Allow to cool in the tin.

Make the Cream:
Put the cream and cacao powder into the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment and whip to firm peaks.  Set aside.

Make the Ganache:
Put the chocolate, butter and water into a small saucepan and melted over low heat until smooth, stirring continuously.  Set aside to cool to room temperature.

Split the cake in half horizontally.  But the bottom half of the cake on a cake stand.  Spoon the chocolate cream on and spread it out leaving a 1cm edge.  Put the top of the cake on and press it down to squish the chocolate cream right to the edges (this way it will be nice and evenly distributed).

Once the ganache is at room temperature, pour it on top of the cake.  It should be the perfect consistency for spreading and slightly dripping down the sides of the cake.

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