Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Treen's Cherry Ripe Fudge Cake

Food can provide comfort, taking you back to a happy time in your life that is fun to revisit, even if only in your memory.  When I saw a recipe for Treen's Cherry Ripe Fudge Cake in Julie Goodwin's new book, Heart of the Home, I was transported back to my childhood, when I used to think it was the coolest thing in the world to hang cherries off my ears like earrings, and I munched on Cherry Ripe chocolate bars, which used to be made by MacRobertsons and came in foil and paper. (Yes, I am a child of the 70s.)

As the name of the cake suggests, it looks, smells and tastes like a Cherry Ripe - swoon.  This cake is rather dense and heavy (like you'd expect fudge to be), and the recipe makes an enormous 26cm cake.  Accordingly, it is not for the faint hearted.  However, if the combination of chocolate, glace cherries and coconut sets your world on fire, then this is the cake for you.

Here is a cross section of the cake, modelled by my miniature kewpie (similar to a Sonny Angel):

To make this cake (adapted from Julie's version), you will need:

250g butter
200g dark chocolate
2 cups sugar
2 tsp vanilla (I left this out)
400ml coconut milk (I used coconut flavoured evaporated milk)
1/4 cup cocoa powder
1 1/2 cups plain (all purpose) flour
1/4 cup self raising flour
1/2 cup shredded coconut (I used dessicated coconut)
1 tbs instant coffee powder
2 lightly beaten eggs
200g chopped glace cherries
chocolate icing, frosting or ganache of your choice (I used chocolate icing made from icing sugar and cocoa powder)
extra coconut to decorate the cake

Preheat your oven to 180 degrees Celsius, and grease and line a 26cm springform pan.

Place the butter, chocolate and sugar in a large saucepan and stir over medium heat until melted.  Remove the saucepan from the heat and stir in the vanilla.  Next, stir in the coconut milk, then set aside to cool.

Place all of the dry ingredients into a large bowl and stir to combine.  Once the chocolate mixture has cooled, fold in the beaten eggs, then combine the mixture with the dry ingredients.  Fold one third of the chopped cherries through the batter, then pour it into the cake tin, and smooth off the top with a large metal spatula.  Scatter another third of the chopped cherries over the top of the cake, then place it into the oven for 1 hour and 15 minutes or until cooked through.  Remove the cooked cake from the oven and allow it to cool in the tin for 10 minutes before unmoulding the cake onto a wire cake rack and allowing it to cool completely.

Once the cake is cool, ice it with chocolate icing/frosting/ganache, and decorate it with the last third of the cherries and coconut.  Slice into thin wedges (a little goes a long way!) to serve.