Chocolate Cake

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This yummy cake, decorated by Charlotte, is calorie free and full of nutrients and vitamins.*

*some of this might be a lie

Serves 12 (unless you are my husband or my brother then it is more like Serves 4 at a push!)
Preparation time: 25 mins
Cooking time: 30 – 40 mins

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Ingredients:
Sponge
Butter, for greasing
3 eggs
115g/4oz golden caster sugar
90g/3 ¼oz self raising flour
2 tbsp cocoa powder
Filling and topping
100g /3 ½oz softened salted butter
200g / 7oz icing sugar
2 tbsp cocoa powder
splash of milk
¼ tsp rum or rum flavouring
200ml double cream
1 tbsp sugar
Something for decorations – Hundreds and Thousands or Maltersers or chocolate flakes or smarties or Mars bars (go wild)

Method:
1. Preheat the oven to 190°c/375°f/gas mark 5. Grease and line a 22cm/8½ inch cake tin.20170710_165502.jpg

2. To make the sponge. Put the golden caster sugar and the eggs into a large mixing bowl and whisk until it becomes mousse like. (If you have a fancy mixer then this is easy. If you have a handheld mixer you can balance it on the bowl like I have done. If you are doing it by hand I wish you luck and you will need to add a bit more time for preparation.)
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You know it is ready when it holds a pattern briefly.
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3. Sift the four and cocoa powder into the mix and fold until the flour and cocoa powder is all combined with the sugar and eggs. Be careful not to knock all the air out though!
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4. Transfer the mix into the cake tin and place into the centre of the oven for 30 to 40 mins.
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5. Whilst the cake is baking you can whip up the fillings. For the chocolate buttercream put the softened butter, icing powder, cocoa powder, rum flavouring (or rum – I use flavouring as we don’t have booze in the house but either is good) and a splash of milk into a bowl. Then it is time to whip it all together. You could an electric whisk for this but don’t complain to me about the state your kitchen will end up in! I use wooden spoon and arm power.
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6. For the cream filling put the cream and sugar in a bowl and whisk it like mad. This time I do recommend the electric whisk unless you have a lot of patience desire for large forearms. Whisk until the cream is quite firm.20170710_182210

7. Once the sponge in baked take it out of the oven to cool. With this cake I know it is done when it starts to pull in from the sides of the tin. As you can see from the subtle hole in the sponge I also check it with a skewer.
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8. Once the sponge has cooled a little in the tin turn it our onto wire cooling wrack.
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9. When the sponge is cool to the touch you need to slice it in half. This can be a challenge but my cake tin leaves a line around the sponge at just the right level to use as a guide.
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10. Now it is time to fill it. Put half of the chocolate buttercream onto the bottom half of the sponge and spread it evenly all over. Then put all the cream on top and spread that too.
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11. Pop the top of the cake on and then put the remaining buttercream on the top and spread that evenly too. (If you are sensible you will have moved the cake onto a plate to do this rather than the cooling wrack but I was not on the ball the day I did this.)
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12. You are now ready to decorate (or get a random child to do it). We find that hundreds and thousands, or some other sugar based decoration, adds an extra something to the cake. The crunch is interesting and the hit of pure sugar is yummy.
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13. EAT IT!

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