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Hi there,

There’s been a slight drought on the blog of late, but I’m hoping to rectify that today with two posts, plus another two as soon as I’ve written them.

I was inspired to make this cake after a recent trip to our favourite pub a few weeks back. Sitting proudly on the bar was a homemade stout cake, which looked and sounded totally scrumptious. However, I managed to find the strength to resist the cake, but the idea was firmly stuck in mind so much so that I went home to raid my cookery books as I knew I had seen something similar in one of my Humingbird books.

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And sure enough, there was my next bake… A gloriously rich dark Guinness cake topped with a tangy cream cheese frosting.

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This is a really easy cake to make so you would expect everything to go to plan. However, it was one of those days where my oven and the cake tin had other ideas and just as I was about to put the cake in the oven I noticed that some of the cake was leaking. A quick rethink saw me cover the base of the tin with some kitchen foil to hold back the leak and in the oven it went.

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I was expecting this cake to take 45 minutes to cook, but it took a lot longer than expected and after checking for about the hundredth time the skewer finally came out clean much to my relief. The next job was to make the icing, which consisted of cream cheese, icing sugar and butter and once the cake was cool I used a palette knife to cover the cake before adding a sprinkling of cocoa powder before putting it in the fridge chill and firm up slightly.

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I love the starkness of this cake against the creamy frosting and I was really excited to cut into it. However, I was really disappointed when I did as I couldn’t tell whether the cake was cooked completely through and even after eating a few pieces I was still none the wiser.

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I was expecting a moist dense sponge however, it had the look and taste of more of a fudgy consistency which I’m not sure it should have had. I love the taste of this cake (although the amount of butter and sugar was alarming) and the tangy cream cheese goes really well with the sponge. I also love the fact that the Guinness comes through, but I wasn’t won over with the texture. However, I did have some positive reviews back and no-one got ill so I can’t complain too much. On the plus side the Husband will be getting some more Guinness cake as I definitely want to make it again to see if it comes out any differently.

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I’ll keep you posted!

If you fancy giving this recipe a go the ingredients and method are listed below:

Ingredients

  • 250ml Guinness
  • 250g unsalted butter
  • 80g cocoa powder
  • 400g caster sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla essence
  • 140ml buttermilk
  • 280g plain flour
  • 2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • 50g unsalted butter, softened
  • 300g icing sugar
  • 125g full-fat cream cheese
  • Cocoa powder, for dusting
  • one 23cm (9in) diameter spring-form cake tin

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 170°C (325°F)/gas mark 3.
  2. Line the base of the tin with baking parchment.
  3. Pour the Guinness into a saucepan along with the butter and gently heat until it has melted.
  4. Remove the pan from the heat and stir the cocoa powder and sugar into the warm liquid. Mix together the eggs, vanilla essence and buttermilk by hand in a jug or bowl and add this to the mixture in the pan.
  5. Sift together the remaining sponge ingredients into a large bowl or freestanding electric mixer and set on a low speed, pour in the contents of the pan.
  6. Mix thoroughly until all the ingredients are incorporated.
  7. Pour the mixture into the prepared cake tin and bake for approximately 45 minutes or until the sponge bounces back when lightly pressed and a skewer inserted into the middle of the cake comes out clean.
  8. Set aside to cool and then remove from the tin on to a wire rack.
  9. Mix the butter and icing sugar together until there are no large lumps of butter and it is fully combined with the sugar in a sandy mixture. Add the cream cheese and mix in a low speed, then increase the speed to medium and beat until the frosting is light and fluffy.
  10. Once the cake has cooled top generously with the cream cheese frosting and decorate with a light dusting of cocoa powder.

Suz x

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