I think I should really have submitted this cake for last month's We should cocoa challenge; it was a lot more successful and tasty than the strawberry and white chocolate muffins I ended up submitting. Ah well, never mind.
After the debacle of the not-peaking-muffins I still wanted to try out the strawberry and dark chocolate combo - being much more a fan of dark chocolate than either milk or white (though I'm seriously tempted to have a go at making caramelised white chocolate as Celia has done). Just think how delicious strawberries dipped in molten dark chocolate and allowed to set are - mmm. So I thought the combo would be good in a cake. Hence this cake. Well, I'm a simple soul at heart, if I want dark chocolate and strawberries in a cake, that's what I make.... no more complicated reasons required round here!
I sort of made this up as I went along, hence the slightly random amounts of some of the ingredients in relation to each other. I had 175g in my mind, but what follows is what happened....
Strawberry and dark chocolate cake
160g butter, softened
175g white caster sugar
180g self raising flour
60g dark chocolate (70% cocoa solids), broken into small pieces
130g strawberries, washed, hulled, quartered and tossed in a couple of tbsp flour extra
(vanilla extract - see below)
- Preheat the oven to gas 4/180C. Grease and line a 20x23cm (8x9") small baking/roasting tin.
- Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
- Add the eggs and flour and beat until well combined.
- Fold through the chocolate and floured strawberries quarters until well distributed.
- Spoon into prepared tin, level and bake for 45 minutes.
- When cool enough, turn onto a wire rack and allow to cool completely.
- Dust over a little icing sugar to serve.
If I were making this again (which would be a good idea, it was yum!) I'd add about a tsp vanilla extract just for added oomph in the cake. It didn't really need it though!
Note that when turning the cake out, it's extremely fragile - partly because it's a lovely tender cake, and partly because the strawberries tend to sink to the bottom and make the base very soft.
Really, really pleased with the way this turned out. A lovely snacking cake for break time at work, and my colleagues made their appreciation known. I really enjoyed the strawberry and dark chocolate combo. I had expected the chocolate to be harder than it was, but it was a little soft and very lovely. The strawberries mostly sank, but some remained suspended and they were a lovely burst of juiciness in the cake. I loved the way that some bites had more strawberry and some more chocolate. Mmmmm....
Just as an aside, I used Normandy salted butter for this cake. I often use salted butter, but not normally with crystals in it, but this needed using up soon. I was worried that the cake would taste funny or too salty, or worst of all have big crystals of salt in it still.... eeek, but I needn't have worried, it was fine. I obviously don't have a sufficiently sophisticated palate to be able to pick up salted butter in cakes. More joy me!
Ah, tupperware - all packed up and ready to go.