But before I get to the recipe I want to throw some love towards my totally amazing Andrew James Induction Hob. This baby saved me, literally, while my kitchen was being remodelled. All the recipes that have appeared on this blog between September and January 2014 were either partially or entirely cooked on one these hobs which was loaned to us. I have slow-cooked stews, fried doughnuts, made caramel and even grilled lamb on this dinky hob!
The heat is instant and surprisingly intense – you can boil a pot of water in record time. In fact the temperature controls take a little getting used to, but they are very responsive – you can simmer at a consistently low temperature and fry at really high heat with equal ease. Once the kitchen remodel was done, I realised I still wanted a portable induction hob to use for food videos and step-by-step photography and the lovely folks at Andrew James were kind enough to send me one to review – thank you!
Ultimate Chocolate and Nutella Cake
- Makes 3x20cm 8inch layers
- 200 g | 7oz 70% dark chocolate chopped
- 200 g | 7oz unsalted butter cubed
- 125 ml | 4fl oz | 1/2 cup filter coffee or water
- 75 ml | 5tbsp buttermilk
- 3 large eggs
- 200 g | 7oz soft light brown sugar
- 100 g | 3.5oz caster sugar
- 100 g | 3.5oz plain flour
- 100 g | 3.5oz self-raising flour
- 25 g | 4 level tablespoons cocoa powder
- 1/4 tsp bicarbonate of soda
- Nutella whipped cream
- 250 g | 8.8oz Nutella or generic hazelnut spread
- 600 ml | 20 fl oz one large pot double cream
- 1 tsp vanilla extract or paste
- Chocolate fudge glaze/icing
- 200 g | 7oz 70% dark chocolate finely chopped
- 250 ml | 8.4fl oz | 1 cup double cream
- 60 ml | 2fl oz milk
- 3 tbsp golden syrup or honey
- 75 g | 5 tbsp unsalted butter cubed
- Preheat the oven to 160C (325F). Grease and line three 20cm (8in) cake tins and dust with flour, shaking any excess.
- Place the chocolate and butter in a bowl and set over a pot of barely simmering water. Allow them to gradually melt and stir together until smooth.
- Add the coffee and use a hand whisk to mix it in.
- Combine the eggs and buttermilk in a measuring jug and briefly whisk together to combine. Add to the chocolate and whisk it in.
- Combine all the dry ingredients and then sift them over the chocolate. Use a hand whisk to mix the batter together until completely smooth.
- Divide evenly between your prepared cake tins and bake for 20-25 minutes until the cakes are firm on top and a skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean.
- Cool in the tins for 15 minutes and then carefully remove from the tins and cool on a wire rack. Be gentle as the cakes can be a little fragile.
- Make the filling: put the Nutella and vanilla to the bowl of your stand mixer. Whisk for 3-4 minutes on high speed and then use a spatula to scrape the bottom and sides of the bowl.
- Lower the speed and add the cream in a steady stream. Increase the speed to maximum and whip until you have firm peaks – be watchful as the cream will split if you overdo it.
- Transfer to a piping bag fitted with a round tip and pipe over the cake layers. Sandwich together and pop in the freezer (or fridge) for 10 minutes.
- Use a palette knife to add a crumb coating of the Nutella cream over the entire cake. Return to the freezer (or fridge) while you prepare your glaze.
- Make the glaze: put the cream, milk and golden syrup in a medium saucepan and bring to the boil over medium-low heat.
- Put the chopped chocolate in a bowl and as soon as the cream comes to the boil pour it over the chocolate and set aside for a couple of minutes.
- Use a small balloon whisk and stir very gently in the centre of the bowl using very small motions. Be patient and keep stirring very gently until the chocolate melts and turns into a glossy glaze.
- Add the butter and stir together until completely smooth. By now the glaze should be still warm enough to be runny but not so hot that it melts your crumb coating.
- Take your cake out of the freezer and then pour the glaze over it until it starts to drip down the sides. You can cover the entire cake or reserve some of the glaze for decoration. Let the glaze cool and set slightly before adding any decorations.
- If you have reserved some of the glaze leave it to cool completely (in the fridge) then transfer to your stand mixer and whisk until it forms firm peaks. Put in a piping bag fitted with a large star tip and pipe some rosettes on the cake (be careful if the glaze is still wet).
- Serve the cake at room temperature but keep in the fridge until 30 minutes before you are ready to serve.
• The cake layers can be prepared a couple of days in advance. Once the cake is filled it is best consumed on the same day as it contains fresh cream.
• Replace the Nutella filling with whipped ganache, American buttercream or Italian meringue buttercream especially if you need to prepare the cake in advance for an event.