Dense and sticky, like a good gingerbread, Nigella’s dense chocolate cake is the business. This version is made with wholemeal flour, flavoured lightly with rose and covered in rose chocolate ganache.
Less than two weeks after my first Clandestine Cake Club, I was getting ready for my second event. This one was themed A Fairy Tale and was set in a yurt in the middle of a big wood, Cardinham Woods to be precise, not too far from where we live.
Nigella’s Dense Chocolate Cake with Rose
One of my go to chocolate cakes, before I started my chocolate blogging adventures, was Nigella’s dense chocolate loaf cake from How to Be a Domestic Goddess. Somehow, this seemed like the right time to make it again. It’s a very simple cake to make and is so delicious it doesn’t really need any adornment. However, as this was a particularly special occasion, I decided to cover it with ganache.
Nigella’s dense chocolate cake is a bit of magic in itself. You add a surprising amount of hot water to the batter, which just seems counter intuitive. But it works brilliantly. I make it with a mix of wholemeal flour and plain. I’ve also made a few other tweaks over the years. In order to match the fairy tale theme, I added a little rose water this time.
I’m a big fan of the chocolate and rose combination, it works surprisingly well. The key is not to add to much rose flavouring as, despite it’s delicate flavour, it can quite easily overpower. I added some to both the cake itself and the ganache.
The cake was as good as I remembered it. Dense and slightly sticky like good gingerbread, it was totally delicious with a smooth mouth feel and it just got better as it got older. I bet Hansel and Gretel would have loved it.
Decorating the Nigella’s Dense Chocolate Cake
Clever decorating not being a particular forte of mine, I was at a bit of a loss as to how to turn this into a fairy tale. Inspiration finally struck (actually it was CT’s idea) – the Fairy Godmother’s Wand. This, I felt, was something I could cope with. Here’s how:
- Cut the tops off two chocolate fingers and place them together on the cake to form a wand.
- Spray the top with gold shimmer.
- Add stars sparking out of the wand’s tip and then dust the cake with edible gold glitter.
Fairy Tale Cakes
As for the other cakes there that night, I was completely wowed and slunk my pitiful effort into a corner out of sight.
Organised by the indefatigable Ellie and hosted by the Woods Cafe, the evening was great fun. There were some familiar faces from my first CCC and many new ones. I was especially delighted to meet a We Should Cocoa regular, the Hungry Hinny, who made a most spectacular castle – a chocolate and raspberry Rapunzel one to boot! My picture wasn’t that great, but you can see it on Nat’s blog.
We ate far too much delicious cake and got to take a plateful home with us again – what a wonderful way to spend an evening.
Fairy Tale Cakes
Other Chocolate Cakes You Might Like
- Blood orange chocolate cake
- Chocolate polenta cake
- Coffee cardamom chocolate mousse cake
- Lavender chocolate cake
- Spiced dark chocolate cake
- Willie’s cloud forest chocolate cake
Keep in Touch
Thanks for visiting Tin and Thyme. If you make Nigella’s dense chocolate cake, I’d love to hear about it in the comments below. And do please rate the recipe. Have you any top tips? Do share photos on social media too and use the hashtag #tinandthyme, so I can spot them.
If you’d like to see some more large cake recipes, follow the link and you’ll find I have quite a lot of them. All delicious, of course.
Fairy Godmother’s Wand Chocolate Cake. PIN IT.
Nigella’s Dense Chocolate Cake – The Recipe
Nigella's Dense Chocolate Cake Flavoured with Rose
- 150 g dark chocolate (I used Green & Black's 85%)
- 500 g dark muscovado sugar
- 300 g unsalted butter
- 3 large eggs (I used a goose egg)
- 3 tsp rose water
- 300 g flour (half wholemeal, half plain)
- 1 ½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
- 350 ml boiling water
- 150 g dark chocolate (I used Green & Black's 70%)
- 150 ml double cream
- 15 g unsalted butter
- 1 tsp rose water
- Melt the chocolate in a bowl suspended over a pan of hot, but not boiling water and leave to cool a little.
- Cream the sugar together with the butter until light in both colour and texture.
- Beat in the eggs, one by one, until all incorporated.
- Beat in the melted chocolate and along with the rose water.
- Sieve in the flour and bicarbonate of soda and fold in to the chocolate mixture alternately with the water.
- Pour into a 23cm (9") round silicone cake mould or lined tin. Bake at 190℃ (375℉, Gas 5) for 25 minutes then for a further 20 minutes at 170℃ (338℉, Gas 3) until well risen but still slightly gooey inside.
- Leave to cool completely before turning out.
- Melt the chocolate in a pan over a low heat with the double cream.
- Add the butter and rose water then stir until smooth.
- Leave to cool until just firm enough to stay on the cake without running down the sides.
- Spread over the top of the cake.
- Cut the tops off two chocolate fingers and place together on the cake to form a wand.
- Spray the top with gold shimmer.
- Add stars sparking out of the wand's tip and then dust the cake with edible gold glitter.
As Tea Time Treats, hosted by Karen this month, has a floral theme, I waved my magic wand and turned this plain old chocolate cake into a floral rose and chocolate delight. TTT is alternately hosted by Kate of What Kate Baked.