Friday, 27 January 2012

Chocolate and Black Pepper Cake.

Chocolate and black pepper cake! I KNOW. Why have I not done this befoooooore. Chocolate and chilli: genius. Chocolate and sea salt: wondrous. Chocolate and black pepper? Of course, it's fabulous.

I even wish I'd have peppered it up more, I was playing it safe and only just putting in what the recipe said because to be honest, pepper and chocolate makes way less sense to me than chocolate and chilli. With its heat chilli has an almost flowery fragrance and sweetness, where as pepper has something deeply savoury about it.

But really I should have stopped fretting and kept grinding because the 'deeply savoury' goodness, with a hint of heat, makes a nice dense chocolate cake; lovely, but nothing to write home about, something to write home about.

Expect to see this combination popping up here again soon. Maybe truffles, oo or shortbread. OOor how about....I could go on forever. With Love and Cake.

Chocolate and Black Pepper Cake
Adapted from The Acorn House Cookbook by Arthur Potts Dawson.

A few notes:
  • Of course if you're not into the chocolate and....thing, you could leave out the pepper and you'd have a lovely grown up chocolate cake.
  • I served mine with mascarpone and cream, on different occasions I might add, but ice cream would be brill too, especially as the cake gets a few days old and is best served after being warmed in the microwave for 30 seconds.
Serves at least 8
You will need

a 23cm cake tin, greased, dusted with flour and chilled

180g butter
240g dark chocolate
6 eggs, separated
70g caster sugar
1 tsp black pepper, freshly ground
icing sugar for dusting

  • First it's the usual. Preheat the oven to 150 °c.
  • Now melt the butter and chocolate in a heatproof bowl set over a pan of just simmering water. It'll take longer than you thing, but be patient and just let it slowly get on with it, no poking or proding.
  • Now in a large bowl whisk the egg yolks and sugar together until pale and fluffy looking. 
  • Stir through the pepper and chocolate mix carefully and gently.
  • Now take a little taste, chef's perks, and check for pepperyness. Add more if you fancy,
  • In a new, spanking clean bowl with a spanking clean whisk, whisk the egg whites until they form stiff peaks and you can tip the bowl upside down without any disaster occuring.
  • Then gently fold a quarter of the egg whites into the chocolate mixture, followed by the rest in 3 batches.
  • When everything is just combined, pour the mixture into your cake tin and pop into the oven, baking for 20-25 minutes. The cake should be puffed up with only the slightest hint of wobble.
  • Leave to cool for in the tin until it's cool enough to handle, then remove from the tin.
  • You can serve now or a bit later...with whatever you fancy, just enjoy.