When considering the important question of how to get as much chocolatey deliciousness as possible into one slice of cake the other day, I decided this recipe would do the trick. I’m not talking a mega rich, dense chocolate cake. I wanted something with layers, something interesting, fun, and a little different. Something involving lots of chocolate, but without drying your mouth out and making you want to down several glasses of water after eating it. My younger sister should actually take the credit for the invention of this amazing rocky road chocolate cake, as she first had the idea for it earlier this year. I have shamelessly copied and adapted her recipe.
The cake base is an old family classic, the one that my mum cracks out for every birthday or special occasion. It is simple, light and delicious, and to me it’s exactly how a chocolate cake should taste. But then I would say that, wouldn’t I? Licking the bowl of this mixture instantly takes me back to ‘helping’ mum in the kitchen when I was little. It’s super easy – to make it, you’ll need:
- 6 oz plain chocolate
- 2 oz butter
- 4 eggs, room temperature
- half a teaspoon of vanilla extract
- pinch of salt
- 9 oz caster sugar
- 6 oz self raising flour
Preheat the oven to 170 C and grease a large cake tin. Melt the chocolate and the butter, stir well and leave to cool. Beat the eggs with the vanilla and salt, then sift in the sugar and mix well. This is the point at which you mix in the cooled chocolate mixture. Then finally sift in the flour and mix well. Pour into the cake tin and bake for 35-40 mins before testing. The centre should be moist but not runny when you take it out. Leave the cake to one side to cool before turning it out of its tin. (Don’t worry if it sinks a little, or the top cracks – it’s meant to do that, it’s kind of meringuey on top and collapses a little. The icing will even it out.)
For the icing, cream around 4 oz softened butter with around 7 oz caster sugar, then melt a small block of plain chocolate, allow to cool and then stir in until the icing is smooth. Ice the cake and then prepare the final touch – the rocky road for the top. You’ll need:
- 4 oz butter
- 1 and a half tablespoons of golden syrup
- 1 oz cocoa powder
- 1 large packet of malteasers, crushed
- 1 packet of marshmallows, cut up into halves (I use scissors)
- half a block of plain chocolate
- half a block of milk chocolate
Melt the butter, golden syrup and cocoa powder in a bowl over a pan of water. Take off the heat, and stir in the marshmallows and the malteasers. Leave this to cool a little, and then pour onto the top of the cake, over the chocolate buttercream icing. Finally, melt the plain and milk chocolate together, pour over the top of the cake and use the back of a spoon to swirl the melted chocolate with the rocky road mixture. Put the cake in the fridge to set.
It sounds incredibly rich with all of that chocolate and sugar, and it is very filling, but because the cake is so moist and light, the whole thing avoids being too much. This is the cake equivalent of Ben & Jerry’s Phish Food ice cream: just the right chocolate-to-marshmallow ratio. Perfect for a chocolate cake occasion when you want to do something just a little bit different.