Old-Fashioned Chocolate Cake

Saturday, 26 January 2013

Old Fashioned Chocolate Cake
(Nigella's recipe here.)

For the cake
200g plain flour
200g caster sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
40g cocoa powder
175g unsalted butter (room temperature)
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
150ml sour cream

For the icing
75g unsalted butter
175g dark chocolate, broken up
1 tablespoon golden syrup
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
300g icing sugar
150ml sour cream


+ Preheat the oven to 180C.
+ Butter and line two 8-inch (20cm) sandwich tins.

1. Sift your flour, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda and cocoa powder into a large bowl and set to one side.
2. Cream the butter and sugar together.  I use a mixer, but this can be done by hand with a lot of elbow grease if you don't have one!
3. Add the eggs, a little at a time, followed by the vanilla.
4. Add the sour cream - don't panic when you see it curdle your beautifully uncurdled mixture!
5. Fold in the dry ingredients until just combined.  Add a tablespoon or two of hot water if your mixture isn't dropping off the spoon.
6. Pour into your lined cake tins, and bake for 20-25 minutes until the knife comes out clean.  Leave to sit in their tins for ten minutes or so, before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.
7. To make the icing, melt the chocolate and butter over a low heat until completely melted.  Remove from the heat and allow to cool slightly.
8. Add the golden syrup, followed by vanilla, sour cream, and finally the icing sugar.  Whisk together until you have a smooth mix.  (You may need to add more icing sugar if it is too runny, or a little water if it is too thick.  It may be perfect!  It needs to be liquid enough to spoon onto the cake, but solid enough not to slide off it.)
9. Take one of your sandwiches and place it top-side down.  Spoon a third of your icing onto it and then, using a palette knife, smooth it out, keeping it a couple of centimetres from the edge because when you press your second layer down onto it, it'll expand out to the edges!
10. Place your second layer on top right-side up, and smooth another third of your icing onto the top.  Then spread the remaining third of your icing around the edges.  Leave for a few minutes to set before cutting into it.


  1. Wow, your recipes look so amazing, i followed (:
    Hopefully i can recreate something similar, though unfortunately i'm slightly disastrous in the kitchen!


    1. Thanks so much! :)
      I'm sure you can! I feel like I get better with every recipe, and I still have so much to learn. This chocolate cake is absolutely amazing, you should definitely try it!

  2. This looks incredible! I will have to try it! Really love your pictures x

    1. This really is such a good chocolate cake. I've been getting cravings for another one, I'll have to make one over Christmas! Thank you! I really love your blog title - another food and film person!



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