Chocolate & Passion Fruit Layer Cake
This glorious recipe from Martha Collison stands out from other chocolate cakes. The sharp passion fruit curd undercuts the richness of the chocolate to deliver a deliciously balanced flavour.
For the Chocolate Cake:250g plain flour
450g Fairtrade caster sugar
100g Divine Chocolate cocoa powder
2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
1⁄2 tsp salt
120g butter, melted
250ml Fairtrade coffee
For the Filling:150ml double cream
1 tbsp Fairtrade icing sugar
10 passion fruits
100g unsalted butter
150g Fairtrade caster sugar
2 eggs, plus 2 yolks
For the Icing:50g butter
100g Divine 70% Dark Chocolate Baking Bar, chopped
75g Fairtarde icing sugar
1 tsp milk
chocolate shavings to decorate
- Preheat the oven to 180°C/160°F/Gas 4 and line two baking tins with parchment. Mix the plain flour, caster sugar, cocoa powder, bicarbonate of soda and salt in a large bowl. Whisk the buttermilk into the melted butter and egg, followed by the coffee. Pour the wet mixture into the dry ingredients, whisking until a smooth batter has formed. Divide the batter evenly between the cake tins (so that they cook at the same rate). Bake for around 30-35 minutes until risen and a skewer inserted comes out clean. Remove from the oven and leave to cool.
- To make the filling, whizz the passion fruit pulp in a food processor to loosen the seeds from the juice. Combine the passion fruit with the butter, caster sugar, eggs and yolks in a saucepan and heat gently, whisking until the butter has completely melted. Turn the heat up to medium and continue to whisk constantly. After 5-6 minutes, the mixture will thicken enough to coat the back of a spoon. At this point, remove from the heat.
- Whip the cream and icing sugar together in a small bowl until it forms soft peaks. Spread the whipped cream over the top of one of the sponges, then cover with spoonfuls of passion fruit curd. Carefully sandwich the second sponge on top. To make the icing, melt the butter and chocolate together over a pan of simmering water, then remove from the heat and mix in the icing sugar and milk. Use a palette knife to spread it over the top of the cake.Decorate with chocolate curls before serving.