Don’t worry if you don’t like Guinness. This is a dense, moist, slightly malty chocolate cake even those who don’t love the black stuff can enjoy!
This recipe is from my recipe book. Which obviously means I got it from my mum at some point!
Ingredients (makes 8 very generous slices!)
- 125 g / 4 oz butter
- 250 g / 8 oz caster sugar
- 250 g / 8 oz plain flour
- 250 ml stout (I used Guinness, but other dark beers are available!)
- 2 eggs
- 25g / 1 oz cocoa powder
- 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
To make your sooty cake use a 20-cm (8 inch) springform cake tin. I greased the sides of the tin and lined the bottom with greaseproof paper. Pre-heat your oven to 180 degrees C / 160 degrees C fan/ Gas Mark 4 / 350 degrees F.
Cream together the butter and sugar until smooth. Add the eggs to this mixture, one at a time, and beat the mixture well until they are combined.
Sieve the cocoa powder into a separate bowl. Pour a little of the stout (i.e. Guinness) into the bowl and blend the cocoa in. Add the rest of the stout and stir in.
In another bowl, sift the flour and bicarb of soda together.
Stir the contents of these last two bowls alternatively into the butter, sugar and egg mix. Stir until you have a smooth mixture.
Pour the mixture into the tin. Sit your tin on a baking tray (in case any mixture leaks out during baking) and bake for 70 minutes or until firm to the touch.
A note on cooking time: you know your oven best. My oven seems to be far hotter than the number on the dial. After 3o minutes, I had to make my Guinness cake a tinfoil hat to stop the top burning. However, this cake really does need over an hour to cook all the way through.
Leave the cake to cool in the tin for 10-15 minutes, turn out onto a wire rack, and peel off the lining paper. Leave to cool completely.
You can decorate your sooty cake as you like. I decided to use a chocolate buttercream on the top and white chocolate shavings. For the buttercream I blended together 65 g butter and 130 g icing sugar until smooth. I then added 25 g of melted dark chocolate and blended again until stirred through evenly. I spread it over the top of the Guinness cake using a palette knife.
For the white chocolate shavings, I just took a vegetable peeler to a bar of white chocolate. It’s the easiest method and very effective!
You don’t have to be a Guinness drinker to enjoy this cake. It’s delicious and, strangely enough, when cut has a slight red sheen. Lovely!
If you’re looking for other chocolate cake recipes, you could try:
Mary Berry’s heavenly chocolate cake with fudge icing.
Claire Huston / Art and Soul