Chocolate mud cake and Sweden

November 7 is Kladdkakans Dag!

Or, if you’re not Swedish, Mud Cake Day. I’m not exactly sure why, but those beautiful people have created a day for this delight. After a brief attempt at Googling the day, I believe it has something to do with a memorial day.

Whatever the reason, between my love of Sweden and my love of cake, I couldn’t resist the opportunity to make something delicious! I adapted my recipe very slightly from Kirsten Tibballs’ (she’s an amazing pastry chef and chocolatier, who runs Savour School, and has an absolutely mesmerising Instagram) classic chocolate mud cake recipe.

 

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I could not have been more pleased with the results. It’s fudgy and dense, sticky and sweet, completely over the top; what more could you want from a mud cake?!

 

Chocolate mud cake

  • 200g dark chocolate
  • 310g butter
  • 1 1/3 cups caster sugar
  • 310ml water
  • 1 ¾ cups plain flour
  • 2 ½ tbsp cocoa
  • 1 tsp bicarb
  • 2 eggs

 

Chocolate ganache (milk, white and dark)

  • 125g white chocolate
  • 90g milk chocolate
  • 90g dark chocolate
  • ¾ cup thickened cream

 

Grease and line a 20cm round cake tin and preheat your oven to 160°C.

Melt your dark chocolate with the butter, caster sugar and water in a saucepan without bringing to a boil.  Remove from the heat and set to one side.

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Sift the flour, cocoa and baking powder together, then pour melted chocolate mix over your dry ingredients, mixing until you’ve got a smooth consistency. Add in your eggs and mix until just combined. Pour into your tin (giving the tin a few light taps on the counter to get rid of some of the bubbles) then pop into the oven for 60-70 minutes.

Your cake will still be a bit wobbly when you take it out of the oven, but don’t be tempted to over-bake it – this wobbliness will keep it delectably fudgy. Allow the cake to cool at room temperature*, remove from the cake tin, then pop in the fridge for at least four hours.

*While your cake is cooling, the centre will sink – never fear! You have two options; one, fill the centre with ganache and make it some ridiculously delicious chocolate well, or two, level off the edges (like I have done in these photos) and have a flat-topped cake.

Remove the cake from the fridge just before you start on the ganache – the coolness of the cake will help your ganache set.

Put each type of chocolate into a separate container (Pyrex jugs are great to help you with pouring later) and set to one side. Put your cream in a heavy-bottomed saucepan on a medium heat and bring to a boil – stir it lightly so that it doesn’t catch on the bottom. Leave on the heat until it froths up impressively, then remove from the heat. Pour ¼ cup of the cream onto each of the containers of chocolate, whisking them until the chocolate has melted. Set to one side for ten minutes.

If you’re planning on putting the ganache on the cake at a later time, cover with cling wrap touching the surface so that it doesn’t develop a skin.

Grab an offset spatula (or a spoon will do). Set your cake on a cooling rack and set that cake rack on a tray lined with baking paper – this might get a little messy! Spoon your chocolate ganaches onto your cake in random blobs, covering the top of the cake, then use your spatula to marble them. Smooth the ganache over the edges so so that you’ve got good coverage. Top with fruit and chocolate as desired, then pop into the fridge for at least 20 minutes before serving.

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Serve slivers of this cake – it’s so decadent that you don’t need big slices. Plus, if you start small, there’s no harm in going back for seconds!

 

 

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Mint Chocolate St Patrick’s Day Slice and greenery

I can’t overstate the love that I have for Ireland. The people, the dramatic landscapes, the green, green greenness of every single plant. To say that I love Ireland would simply not do it justice. I visited Ireland in 2010 because I had a cousin there (and because I had always wanted an excuse to go) and it was indescribably lush.

St Patrick's day mint chocolate slice (5 of 9)

And those gorgeous Irish accents, don’t even get me started!

I totally understand why green is associated with St Patrick’s Day, because I had never seen so many shades of green in my life! Which is why I went full cliche with this choc-mint slice and made it a vibrant shade of green. It pained me slightly because I’m so fond of pastel hues, but I’m super happy with the result, so I’m glad I powered through!

Do you celebrate St Patrick’s Day? Maybe you like things a little less hulk-coloured? If that’s the case, check out my Guinness Cake, Baileys Bundt or Baileys Buttercream Biscuits.

St Patrick's day mint chocolate slice (3 of 9)

Base

  • 1 3/4 cups plain flour
  • 1/3 cup cocoa powder
  • 1/2 cup icing sugar
  • 200g butter, melted
  • 1/4 cup coconut

Mint filling

  • 3 tbsp milk
  • 160g butter
  • 3 1/2 cups icing sugar
  • 4-5 tsp peppermint essence
  • 1/2 tsp green food colouring

Chocolate topping

  • 3 tbsp coconut oil
  • 275g dark chocolate
Start with your filling. Put the milk and butter in a heavy-bottomed saucepan over a medium heat until melted. Remove from the heat and sift in the icing sugar. Return to the heat for 3-4 minutes, allowing it to simmer slightly. Make sure you’re mixing continuously so that the mixture doesn’t catch on the bottom. Pour this mixture into a bowl and pop into the fridge to cool for 30 minutes. While the filling cools, make a start on your base.

 

Preheat oven to 180°C fan and grease a 20cm fluted tart tin with a removable bottom.

 

Sift together your flour, cocoa and icing sugar into a large bowl. Mix in your melted butter and your coconut until it’s well combined. The mixture should be in large clumps, rather than a giant ball – don’t worry, you’ll flatten them out later. Scoop your mixture into your greased pan and press down with your fists (or a spatula) until you have a smooth, even base. Pop into the oven for 15-18 minutes.

 

Remove from the oven when the top of the base looks dry – don’t leave it any longer than the 18 minutes, you don’t want it drying out. Plus, it’s actually better when it’s a little underdone. Set it to one side until it is cool enough that you can touch it comfortably.

 

Remove your green filling from the fridge, pour it out onto the base and smooth it out with a spatula. You shouldn’t need to help it fill out the sides too much, it will spread by itself. Return to the the fridge for another half hour.

 

While the slice is chilling in the fridge, melt your chocolate in a heatproof bowl set over a pan of simmering water and scoop the coconut oil into it – the heat in the chocolate should melt the coconut oil. Mix until you’ve got a lovely, glossy mixture. Set to one side to cool for 15 minutes.

 

Remove your base from the fridge and pour the chocolate mixture over the top. If you’ve got any chocolate left over, reserve for drizzling over the edges before serving. Return to the fridge for at least 2.5 hours.

 

(If you choose to drizzle the extra chocolate over the edges, remove it from the fridge 30 minutes before serving, put the chocolate mixture in a snap lock bag and snip off a small section of the corner and pipe onto each flute indentation, making little wave movements around the circumference of the slice and then return to the fridge.)

 

St Patrick's day mint chocolate slice (2 of 9)

 

 

Allow the slice to rest at room temperature for at least 15 minutes before serving.

 

Want to know the trick to stopping your chocolate from cracking when you cut it?

 

Take an extra sharp, thin knife and point the tip into the centre of the slice, then place your hand on the top of the blade and push down gently.  Repeat with each slice to get perfectly straight slices without cracking the chocolate.

 

St Patrick's day mint chocolate slice (7 of 9)

 

St Patrick's day mint chocolate slice (6 of 9)

 

St Patrick's day mint chocolate slice (4 of 9)

 

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Are you making this dish of a dessert? Tag me on Instagram and use #bakingwithgab so I can see your bright green creations!

Angel food cupcakes and lightness

singleI had one of those weekends where everything seems to float on by. It was most enjoyable. I baked most of Saturday, had a long-awaited catch up with a good friend, and entertained on Sunday. By entertained I mostly mean that I force-fed my friends so that I didn’t eat all of Saturday’s baking efforts.

It was all fabulous, easy, lovely. After my jam-packed weekend in Melbourne, the lightness of it all was refreshing. There is no better segue into these cupcakes than this – they’re easy, fabulous and breezy. They’re also quite a show-stopper, with their brilliant white inner. They’re the kind of cupcake that looks like you’ve put in loads of effort, when actually you haven’t – I love those recipes!

Cashew, Cobs & caramel fudge and texture

mixIf you haven’t noticed already, I get kind of excited about food. I love putting unexpected flavours together (basil and chocolate, anyone?), I love putting a twist into classic recipes, and I’m really loving playing around with textures to avoid the sameness that can creep into an indulgence like fudge.

Don’t get me wrong, I ADORE simple, speedy fudge. I would have eaten my Nutella fudge all by myself if my siblings hadn’t found out about it. And the peanut butter fudge? I basically did eat that all by myself!

But this fudge is different. It’s kind of grown up. I’d venture so far as to say that it’s a little bit classy!

The smoothness of the chocolate fudge is gorgeous. It’s rich and suave. If this fudge was a person, it would probably be Richard Branson.

The addition of the jersey caramels, Cobs popcorn and the cashews. Make it brilliant, crunchy and a little bit nuts.

Probably still like Richard Branson…

I was a little worried about posting this recipe, because I thought that it was kind of ugly. It’s bumpy and chunky and not as pretty as the recipes I usually post. But the response to the preview photo I posted yesterday on Facebook was fabulous. I love that you guys see beauty in this chunky little delight.

Personally, I think that the alliteration of these three additives (as well as the taste) makes them the best. No matter what combination of ingredients is in the bite that you take, I promise it will be glorious.

Cobbs, cashew and caramel fudge

  • fudge400g dark chocolate
  • 395g tin sweetened condensed milk
  • 2 tbsp thickened cream
  • ½ cup cashews
  • ¾ cup jersey caramels, roughly chopped
  • 1 cup Cobs salted caramel popcorn

 

caramelGrease a 20cm square tin and line it with baking paper. You only need to grease it very lightly, just so that the baking paper has something to adhere to.

Chop up your caramels. Try not to chop them too finely, they’re beautiful when they’re big and chunky. Leave your cashews and salted caramel popcorn whole. Set these to one side.

meltPop your chocolate and sweetened condense milk into a saucepan over a low heat. Stir constantly until the chocolate is melted and the mixture is smooth. Don’t worry if you can’t get the mixture completely smooth, a few little chunks of chocolate won’t make any difference to the finished product. Add in the thickened cream to give it a glossy sheen.

Take the chocolate mixture off the heat and stir in your caramels, cashews and Cobbs popcorn. Working as quickly as you can, distribute them evenly throughout the mixture, making sure everything is covered in the chocolate fudge. Pour into your prepared pan and smooth it down as best you can. Don’t bother making it perfect, there’s something to be said for delicious, ugly imperfection. refrigerate for at least an hour.

setThat’s it! Sit back and snack on any popcorn or caramels that you’ve got left over.

Remove from the fridge ten minutes before you want to serve it and slice into small squares. It’s super rich, so you only need a mouthful or two!

The great thing is, you can substitute the additives with anything – make a marshmallow, choc-popcorn and walnut fudge. Or M&M, jaffa and white choc chip fudge. There are so many great possibilities.

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