Ultimate chocolate cake

My lovely yoga teacher kindly made this indulgent chocolate cake last year for my birthday that all us yoga students devoured in one sitting.

I’ve made many chocolate cakes over the years but this is really my favourite and happily the most simple. It’s also completely vegan so can be enjoyed by all.

The recipe was kindly shared – thank you Sam! I’ve given it a tweak here and there. It has been made many many times and is even requested for birthday cakes by my boys now.

We have 2 birthdays in January, so this cake has been made quite a bit recently. It’s really delicious and although very chocolatey, the sponge is really light. Double up the recipe for a layer cake, but my favourite is to bake in a 20cm square baking tin and cut up in to squares. This cake looks so pretty with fresh roses and berries, but equally my kids have also been known to decorate it very liberally with rainbow sprinkles, popping candy, chocolate stars etc.

This cake also works really well with added orange zest/ chopped stem ginger or chopped  walnuts. This is a great basic recipe that lends itself so well to many other varieties of chocolate cake.

Chocolate cake

  • 185 g sifted spelt or gluten-free flour
  • 150 g  raw cane or coconut sugar
  • 40 g raw cacao powder
  • 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • Pinch of salt
  • 250 ml hand hot water
  • 75 ml liquid coconut or vegetable oil
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp apple cider vinegar

Chocolate ganache

  • 200 g good quality dark chocolate
  • 200 ml coconut milk from a can (shake well to combine the water and the hardened cream which often settles at the top)
  • 2 tsp maple syrup
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • Pinch of salt
  • Fresh untreated roses, berries, dried rosebuds, sprigs of mint and a sprinkling of icing sugar to decorate.

Preheat oven 175 C degrees

Grease and line your baking tray, tin or cake mould.

Thoroughly mix all your dry ingredients in a mixing bowl and have all your wet ingredients ready combined.

Pour in the wet ingredients and mix well until you have a smooth, quite runny cake batter. Pour in to your tin and bake for 30 minutes or until a wooden skewer comes out clean.

Allow to cool before removing from the tin.

For the ganache, heat the coconut milk until just before boiling point then remove from the heat. Add the dark chocolate, breaking it up into pieces first, then stir until it is all melted together. Add vanilla and salt, then finally the maple adding less or a little more to your taste. As the ganache cools it begins to set but this happens quite slowly. You can speed up this process by refrigerating it. When the ganache is at a spreadable consistency its time to decorate your cake. From here it’s over to you decorate as you wish. Enjoy! x


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