Chocolate Raspberry Cake
Chocolate Raspberry Cake is a classic combination that is perfect for celebrations big or small. Get the recipe below.
I can’t speak for other bloggers, but if you see a cake on my blog you can guarantee that it was made for a real celebration. This year my sister turned 30 and we had a big celebration with our family to mark the occassion. I love baking cakes for people, whether its a birthday, engagement or even retirement so I was super excited when my brother-in-law asked me to bake a cake for my sister’s birthday party.
The best bit about baking a cake for someone in particular, rather than “just because”, is the reaction on their face when they see the cake for the first time. Of course I also love thinking about the flavours they like, making a cake big enough to cater for a party, and choosing the decoration style!
My sister is a real chocoholic so it had to be a chocolate cake. She’s also a girly-girl (the complete opposite of me!) so I wanted to make a modern, sophisticated looking cake that was really feminine and pretty too. I hope I did her proud.
Because this cake had to feed a party of 16+ its a pretty large cake. I think my sister was wowed by the height alone! The recipe below will make a 5 layer cake, 8 inches wide but its not too hard to scale down. If you are going to make it, just be prepared you’re going to need plenty of eggs and a hell of a lot of chocolate!
I’ve made my sister plenty of cakes over the years and despite her loving chocolate cake, I hadn’t actually made her one in quite a while. For this cake I went back to my old, tried and tested chocolate fudge cake recipe which I first posted to the blog in 2012! In fact I’m pretty sure the pictures of the cake in the post are from another one of her birthdays way back when.
Seeing as she’s now the big 3-0 I wanted to do something a bit more sophisticated – the cake had to be covered in ganache. I love making ganache. Its so simple and versatile. In fact, the ganache in this recipe is used not only to cover the cake, but to make the truffles for the top too! The trick to the perfect bittersweet ganache is a mix of milk and dark chocolate.
In the sponge I really recommend making it with a good quality cocoa powder. If you can only get your hands on Cadbury Bournville cocoa powder, it will work just fine. Though I’m not a huge fan of Green & Blacks, it’s very one dimensional and just has no richness or depth.
Fresh raspberries appear in 3 places on this cake – there are fresh raspberries mashed up and spread between the layers, a few whole berries are scattered on top, and the pink icing you see is buttercream made with raspberries! (Do you remember the fresh strawberry buttercream I used on my Neapolitan cake? It’s very similar to that!) Chocolate and fruit of any kind is always a winning combination but chocolate and raspberries has to be up there as one of my favourites!
I was a little bit sad that I wasn’t able to get any raspberries from the garden but its still very early and the weather has been absolutely terrible. Hopefully we don’t have too much longer to wait before our canes are overloaded with berries again. It would be a fantastic excuse to make another cake!
As well as hoping we might have some homegrown raspberries to add to the cake, I had also wanted to pick some flowers from my own edible flower patch. Frustratingly the weather has just been too cold and we are still a little bit behind on growing our own. You’ll just have to watch this space for more info.
So, with no edible flowers in the garden, I had to order a batch online. I opted to buy mine from Greens of Devon and I’m pleased to say service was fantastic. They were delivered on the Thursday and I kept them unopened in the fridge until Saturday afternoon. When it came to the end of the party and the big cake reveal the flowers were still looking fresh! The next morning they had wilted a bit but no where near as much as I expected.
You also get LOADS in a pack which I was really pleased about. I kept a few back in the fridge for another project and the rest went into homemade popsicles which I will reveal at some point when the weather warms up.
If you can’t grow your own I definitely recommend buying from Greens of Devon (and no they didn’t pay me to say that haha!)
Chocolate Raspberry Cake
This Chocolate and Raspberry Layer Cake is perfect for any celebration!
For the sponge layers
- 435 grams self raising flour
- 7.5 tablespoons cocoa powder
- 375 grams caster sugar
- 5 eggs
- 375 millilitres oil
- 375 millilitres milk
- 5 tablespoons golden syrup
For the raspberry filling
- 200 grams raspberries fresh
- 1 tablespoon icing sugar
For the ganache
- 400 millilitres double cream
- 400 grams milk chocolate chopped finely
- 400 grams dark chocolate chopped finely
For the raspberry buttercream
- 4 raspberries fresh
- 1 tablespoon butter softened
- 30 grams icing sugar
For the decoration
- 5-6 raspberries fresh
- gold lustre dust
- edible flowers
- assorted sprinkles
For the sponge layers
Pre-heat the oven to gas mark 4 and line 8-inch cake tins with grease proof paper (see notes).
Sieve the flour, cocoa and sugar into a large bowl and make a well in the middle.
Whisk the eggs then pour them into the well along with the milk, oil and golden syrup.
Using an electric whisk beat until smooth and frothy - don't worry the mix is very runny.
Pour the mixture into your tins and bake for 25 minutes until springy to the touch..
Once baked, leave the cakes to cool on a wire rack.
For the raspberry filling
Using a fork, crush the raspberries until they have broken down.
Add in the icing sugar and mix well - this will draw out some of the liquid from the raspberries and make a loose filling.
For the ganache
Heat the cream until almost at a simmer (see notes).
Take the cream off of the heat and stir in the chocolate.
Keep stirring until the chocolate has completely melted - if you need to reheat the cream to ensure all of the chocolate melts then do so gently.
Allow to cool until the ganache is thick, glossy and spreadable (as opposed to runny).
For the decoration and assembly.
Spoon a little ganache onto the middle of the cake board and place the first layer of sponge on top.
Fill a piping bag with 7-8 tablespoons of ganache.
Pipe a ring around the edge of the cake, making a barrier to prevent any of the raspberry filling from spreading out of the sides.
Spoon 2-3 tablespoons of the raspberry filling into the middle of the ganache ring you have piped and spread out until even.
Place the next sponge layer on top and repeat, using the last of the raspberry filling between the 4th and 5th layers.
Spoon half of the ganache on to the top of the cake.
Using a large angled spatula, smooth out the ganache until it is flat on top, gently easing the excess ganache down the sides.
Smooth out the ganache around the sides of the cake, adding extra ganache where needed, until it is smooth and completely covered.
Place the leftover ganache into the fridge until it has set firm.
Using a teaspoon or melon baller, spoon a small amount of the ganache and roll into a ball.
Roll the ball in cocoa powder and place to one side.
Repeat until you have used all of the leftover ganache.
Add a little shimmer to the truffles by using the gold lustre dust.
Mash the raspberries before beating together with the butter and icing sugar until smooth.
Add the buttercream to a piping bag which has a star tip attached.
To decorate the cake, place the truffles, and raspberries in a crescent shape on top of the cake.
Fill in any gaps by piping a little of the buttercream in star shapes - hold your piping bag vertically, apply pressure until a star shape has formed, stop piping and lift up immediately.
Finish by adding edible flowers and sprinkles.
The cake mix is very runny so make sure that you use sandwich tins (as opposed to spring form tins) or, that you have completely sealed off any gaps with the grease proof paper other ways you may find leaks.
You will need to bake 5 layers but don't worry if you don't have 5 8 inch tins. I only have 2 tins so could only bake 2 layers at a time. If you have the same issue, simply cover the leftover cake mix with clingfilm until you are ready to use it.
Making ganache is a bit of a slow going process and you have to be patient.
To speed things up you can heat your cream in the microwave but check it at 30 second intervals and stir in between.
If the chocolate isn't melting and the cream has cooled down, reheat it for a minute or two (or just 15 seconds if using the microwave). Stir well before heating again.
Avoid putting the ganache in the fridge before using it to ice the cake - if you cool it too quickly it will loose its gloss and shine.
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