Serves 8. Prep time 30 minutes. Cooking time 40 minutes
This is a rich, moist and dark cake for chocolate lovers. It is perfect with a cup of coffee and also makes a lovely dessert at the end of a special meal. Serve on its own or with fresh raspberries/strawberries and it is great with a scoop of vanilla or raspberry soya ice cream.
Store in the fridge and it will keep for a couple of days.
Plain chocolate (about 70% cocoa solids)- 180g
‘pure’ dairy-free, sunflower spread- 180g
Caster sugar- 180g
4 medium eggs
Ground almonds -75g
Plain flour- 2 heaped tablespoons
Equipment – 1X 20cm cake tin. Baking parchment or greasproof paper to line the base. Whisk. Wooden spoon. Metal spoon. Small (heat proof), medium and large mixing bowls
1) Heat the oven to 160oC fan (180oC or gas mark 4). Lightly grease the sides of the tin and dust with some flour. Cut the baking parchment to the correct size and use it to line the base of the tin.
2) Melt the chocolate in a small heatproof bowl over a gently simmering pan of water. When it is completely melted carefully remove the chocolate from the heat- careful the pan and steam are very hot!
3) Cream the butter and sugar together. Make sure they become lighter in colour but do not overbeat as it may split.
4) Separate the egg yolks from the egg whites. (Put the egg whites in a clean and grease-free medium sized bowl for later).
5) One at a time- Add the egg yolks to the creamed sugar and fat, beating well between each addition. The mixture will start to thicken up a bit.
6) Add the melted, cooled chocolate and stir in to the mixture until combined.
7) Add the plain flour and the almonds to the mixture and mix in thoroughly.
8) Whisk the egg whites until they are stiff enough to hold tall peaks. (The fun test is to hold the bowl upside down and the whites shouldn’t fall out!)
9) Add 1/3 of the egg whites to the chocolate mixture and give it a good mix together to loosen the mixture up a bit.
10) Now add the next 1/3 of the egg whites and gently fold them into the mixture using a metal spoon. Please be as gentle as you can at this stage, the egg whites are full of air bubbles which are needed to lift the cake, try to incorporate as much air into the mixture as you can.
11) Repeat step 10)
12) Gently pour the mixture into the prepared baking tin and bake in the preheated oven for 35 minutes.
13) When done the top of the cake should have a light crust and the insides will be soft and fudgey. Leave it to cool in the tin.
14) Transfer to a serving plate and sprinkle over icing sugar for the finishing touch.