The 8th of May was my unofficial birthday. To cut a long and rather depressing story short, I don’t like to make a big fuss over my real birthday. A few years back Tiana decided in which case we needed to celebrate my birth on some other day. This day (and the reason why did make sense at the time I promise you) was the 8th of May.
Recently, I’ve not really celebrated my unofficial birthday either. I’m never one for a fuss, and I hate surprises, so people don’t tend to give me surprises. This does backfire somewhat when it comes to parties, but ah well. This year, the day itself passed with very little note indeed, but I came home on Friday evening to discover a large cake sitting on my shelf in the fridge – Moose had got baking. She said it was because she felt bad not to have done something for my unofficial birthday, but I reckon she just wanted to bake and was using that as an excuse.
Not that this is a bad thing. Cake is, after all, cake, and this is a particularly good cake!
As quite a lot of Nigella’s cake recipes are, it’s unusual, but works really really well:
Chocolate Guinness Cake
For the cake:
- 250 ml Guinness
- 250 g unsalted butter
- 75 g cocoa
- 400 g caster sugar
- 142 ml sour cream
- 2 eggs – from happy hens (that is free range). This doesn’t affect the taste, but it will affect your karma
- t tbsp real vanilla extract
- 275 g plain flour – that is flour without rising agent added
- 2 1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
For the icing:
- 300 g Philadelphia cream cheese – Moose used generic and it didn’t set very well. Have to assume that real Philly works better
- 150 g icing sugar
- 125 ml double or whipping cream
- Preheat the oven to gas mark 4 / 180oc, butter and line a 23 cm springform tin
- Pour the Guinness into a large wide saucepan, add the butter gradually, and heat until the butter has melted. At which time, whisk in the cocoa and sugar.
- Beat the sour cream with the eggs and vanilla and pour into the brown, buttery, beery pan and finally whisk in the bicarb and flour.
- Pour the cake batter into the greased, lined tin and bake for 45 minutes to an hour. Leave to cool completely in the tin on a cooling rack as it is quite a damp cake.
- Lightly whip the cream cheese until smooth, sieve over the icing sugar, then beat together. Add the cream and beat again until it makes a spreadable consistency. Ice the top of the black cake so that it resembles the frothy top of a pint.
– A few tips that the book won’t tell you:
This needs longer to cook than less – if it looks wibbly in the middle when you take it out of the oven, it probably isn’t done yet. We’ve not worked out the optimum cooking time, but rest assured we will keep trying!
The middle will probably sink, and it will ooze a bit of Guinness, but keep it in the fridge, and it tastes amazing!
Probably not suitable for the young or teetotal.
I’d hate to think what the calorie count of just a slice of this is, but who cares, right? It’s cake, and cake isn’t meant to be good for you. Enjoy 😉