I’m in eternal search of the holy grail of cake slices. There is very little more comforting than a perfectly soft crumbed cake, slightly sticky on one layer to give you that almost fudgy mouthfeel, that leaves you totally floored and frankly, weeping unceremoniously for more.  This is ‘to my hell with calories’ moment, so please forgive me for my very indulgent moments in this recipe. Just convince yourself, as I do, that the almonds are wonderfully healthy and shall immediately balance any extravagances ! This is very rich, so serve in thin small slices as I have…but who am I kidding….you’ll definitely be back for more!


1 cup of light brown sugar

400gms of salted butter (gulp, yes, I KNOW, but trust me on this!)

250 gms of dark cooking chocolate

2 cups almonds, very finely ground

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/4 cup of rum

1 tsp vanilla essence

1/2 tsp coffee powder

8 eggs

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees. Grease and flour coat 2 small sandwich cake pans. I like to bake this in two pans as you really want to serve small delicate slices as opposed to a thick doorstopper wedge of cake!

Separate the eggs, retaining the yolks and whip up the egg whites until they are stiff. Set aside.

Place the sugar, ground almonds, baking powder in a large mixing bowl and combine all the ingredients together.

Melt your butter in the microwave. Set aside.

In a heavy based saucepan, place the chocolate, the rum, the vanilla essence and the coffee powder and pour over the hot melted butter. Now, on a very low heat start to gently stir all the ingredients together until the chocolate is melted and glossy as in the photo, taking care not to let this mixture boil. Take it off the heat as soon as the chocolate has melted.


Add the egg yolks to the ground almond mixture and combine in well. Now add the melted chocolate, mixing and incorporating everything in together.

Finally fold in the egg whites. Use a wide spatula as this helps to lift and fold over the chocolate mixture scraping all the mixture from the bottom of the bowl. Make sure you take a good 4 or five minutes to turn and fold making sure that you have a nicely balanced mixture with all the chocolate mixture folded in. ( If you don’t do this properly, you might find the heavier chocolate mixture  at the bottom of the bowl that has not been mixed in with the egg whites.)

Place in the middle of the oven and bake for 45 mins or until a skewer comes out clean. Do not, whatever you do, open the oven before this time otherwise you will have a rather large crater in the middle of your cake!

I would serve this, as I have as a dessert, with a thick dollop of heavy whipped Jersey cream, with fresh rasberries. Ofcourse this can be eaten any time of the day, even as early as 6am when you might just not be able to resist this till tea time!!!

Keep covered and refrigerated and it will certainly last a bit longer!

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