Chocolate Fudge Cake Tray Bake

For a person who doesn’t LOVE all things chocolate I sure do end up baking a lot of chocolate cake. But I do live with Europe’s foremost chocolate cake testers who take their job very seriously. They have waded their way through Nigella’s chocolate Fudge Cake from my very first post, Nigel Slater’s rich chocolate Brownie, a version of Devils Chocolate cake, Mary Berry’s Christmas Chocolate Mousse Cake, not to mention melting Chocolate Fondants or Chocolate Toffee shortcake. And that’s just dark & milk chocolate — there’s also the delicious Baked White chocolate and Raspberry Cheescake, which is always a hit. (In fact have a look through many more on the “chocolate” link above) As I said, I live with experts. And they are cruel tough at times, there is no room or time for kind words and “it’s lovely Mam, really” — they feel its important to tell the whole chocolate truth, harsh as it is at times, (“Betty Crocker’s is better than this Mam” once uttered by a very cruel reviewer). But as they say, there are simply too many good chocolate cakes and desserts out there to waste time posting mediocre ones. So if it makes it this far, its usually pretty good.

This is from James Martin, the presenter of BBC’s very popular Saturday kitchen, first published in BBC Food Magazine June 2010. Its so easy and quick but still has the required ‘fudgy’ consistency, especially after a day. The icing is actually from Nigella — I adjust it to make slightly less than she suggests in her Fudge Cake recipe. I also use 52% Cocoa Solids rather than the richer chocolate often suggested — know your audience. Younger chocolate lovers generally don’t like really dark chocolate. (This will not work with cheap cooking chocolate however).


200g plain chocolate, broken into chunks

200g butter

200g light brown muscovado sugar

100ml soured cream

2 eggs, beaten

200g self-raising flour

5 tbsp cocoa powder


180g Icing Sugar

160g Butter

110g Chocolate


Heat oven to 160C/140C fan/gas 3. Line a 22 x 22cm square tin, or a roasting tin as in the photos here, with baking parchment. Put the chocolate, butter and sugar into a large pan with 100ml hot water and gently melt together.

Set aside for 2 mins, then stir in the soured cream followed by the eggs. Finally, stir or whisk in the flour and cocoa until lump-free, then pour into the prepared tin. Bake for 50–55 mins until a skewer comes out clean. Sit the tin on a wire rack to cool.

Meanwhile, make the icing. Gently melt the chocolate in a heatproof bowl set over a pan of barely simmering water, then cool slightly. Whisk the butter until light and fluffy, then add the icing sugar and continue to whisk. Add the melted chocolate and mix to a glossy creamy icing.

To decorate, carefully turn out the cooled cake and peel off the baking parchment. Spread the icing over the top. Cut & serve!

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