Chocolate Guinness Cake

Nigella says of her recipe: “This cake is magnificent in its damp blackness.” Not quite how most of us would describe a cake but each to their own! What I will say is that my neighbour Emma thinks this is a fantastic recipe that always gets plenty of compliments when she serves slices of it to her friends.

Chocolate Guinness Cake

Chocolate Guinness Cake

Ingredients serves 12

250 ml Guinness
250g unsalted butter
75g cocoa powder
400g caster sugar
142 ml sour cream
2 large eggs
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
275g plain flour
2½ teaspoons bicarbonate of soda
300g cream cheese
150g icing sugar
125 ml double cream (or whipping cream)

How to prepare
Preheat the oven to gas mark 4/180°C/350ºF, and butter and line a 23cm / 9 inch springform tin.
Pour the Guinness into a large wide saucepan, add the butter – in spoons or slices – and heat until the butter’s melted, at which time you should whisk in the cocoa and sugar. Beat the sour cream with the eggs and vanilla and then pour into the brown, buttery, beery pan and finally whisk in the flour and bicarb.

Pour the cake batter into the greased and lined tin and bake for 45 minutes to an hour. Leave to cool completely in the tin on a cooling rack, as it is quite a damp cake.

When the cake’s cold, sit it on a flat platter or cake stand and get on with the icing. Lightly whip the cream cheese until smooth, sieve over the icing sugar and then beat them both together. Or do this in a processor, putting the unsieved icing sugar in first and blitz to remove lumps before adding the cheese.

Add the cream and beat again until it makes a spreadable consistency. Ice the top of the black cake so that it resembles the frothy top of the famous pint.