Chocolate Almond Cake with Prunes

Serves 6-8

Ingredients

  • 250g dark chocolate
  • 225g butter
  • 6 large Select Free Range eggs, separated
  • 260g caster sugar
  • 70g ground almonds
  • 50g Homebrand flour, sifted
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 pinch of salt
  • 1 ½ cups pitted prunes, halved
  • juice of 1 orange
  • 300ml Homebrand cream, whipped
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How to Whip Perfect Cream

Method

Preheat the oven to 175°C.

Grease a 25cm loose bottomed cake tin. Line the bottom with baking paper and the sides with strips of tinfoil.

Melt the chocolate and butter together gently over low heat and reserve.

Beat the egg yolks and caster sugar together until thick, pale and creamy. Fold in the chocolate mixture. Fold in the ground almonds, flour and baking powder.

Whisk egg whites until they hold soft peaks but are not dry or grainy. Add a spoonful or two of whites to the chocolate mix to loosen it, then gently fold in remaining egg whites, vanilla and salt and pour into the cake tin.

Bake for 1 hour or until a skewer inserted into the middle of the cake comes out clean but still moist. The mix should remain moist but not liquid.

Allow cake to cool in the tin, turn out and remove the paper and foil.

The cake may sink a little in the centre and be prone to some cracking on the surface, but this will not detract from the result at all.

Put the prunes, and orange juice into a small saucepan. Add 3 Tbsp of water and bring to the boil. Remove from the heat, add 4 Tbsp sherry, mix well and cool.

Slice the cake in half horizontally.Spread the prune mixture over the bottom half of the cake. Spread the whipped cream on top. Place the other half of the cake on top, pressing down lightly with the flat of your hand to make it stick.

Ganache icing

Put 90ml cream into a small saucepan and bring to the boil. Remove from heat and add 170g dark chocolate, chopped coarsely. Stir until chocolate has melted. Cool until thick enough to spread.

Chocolate butter cream icing

Put 1½ cups icing sugar, 3 Tbsp cocoa, 2 Tbsp softened butter and 1 tsp vanilla essence in a mixing bowl. Add warm water little by little beating well to a spreadable paste.

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