Ooh hello my lovelies, have I got a treat for you today? Yes of course I have and a dazzling one at that. Welcome to my Chocolate Sparkle Cake!
It’s ok you can read through once you’ve looked at all the photo’s – I would!!!
So, this cake was inspired by Bonfire Night ( November 5th if you’re not from the UK). Our children were being taken to an amazing fireworks party by my wonderful sister and brother-in-law, along with their cousins.
While they were out I wanted to make a cake, that on their return would make them say “Wow” and remind them of the fun they’d had.
It has to be chocolate:
So being our children meant this had to be a Chocolate Cake. I wanted a deep, chocolatey, moist cake, smothered in thick, glossy, chocolate ganache and then topped with as many sprinkles I could get my hands on.
Thus the Chocolate Sparkle Cake idea was formed in my head.
And, knowing that I didn’t want a layer cake, it was important to ensure the cake itself was as moist as possible. Since adding cocoa to any batter has a drying effect, so to counter that I added sour cream.
I’d seen Ina Garten add it to many of her bakes and figured it was worth a try. Yep I was winging it yet again!
Oh my. I soo made the right decision. Because you cannot taste the sour cream in the baked cake, however, the baked cake has such a moist, tender crumb. This is one ingredient I will be experimenting with more, that’s for sure.
What really sends this cake over the top flavour-wise is the addition of liqueur to the chocolate ganache. I happened to have an unopened bottle of Chocolate Bailey’s Luxe. So I added some. Mmm another brilliant decision, I was truly on a roll!
I only used a small amount and it is totally fine to leave it out altogether. Our youngest is 13 years old so I was happy for him to have a very small, diluted amount.
I would say that this cake is both decadant and rich. All three of our children and all the adults loved it. I’m not sure if it’s richness would be enjoyed by younger children, even with the absence of liqueur?
Recipe : Makes 1 x 10″ Chocolate Sparkle Cake
For the cake:
275g/10oz Unsalted Butter at room temp.
150g/5oz Soft Light Brown Sugar
150g/5oz Caster Sugar
5 Large Eggs – I always use free range
1tsp Vanilla Extract – I use Nielsen-Massey
225g/8oz Plain White Flour
100g/4oz Cocoa Powder
2.5tsp Baking Powder
1/4tsp Salt – I use Maldon
200ml/7fl oz Full Fat Sour Cream
Alternatively – Wright’s Baking Chocolate Fudge Cake Mix would also work really well for this cake if you haven’t the time or energy to bake from scratch. Follow the packet instructions for baking and then decorate as given below.
For the topping:
100g/4oz Dark Chocolate minimum 70% Cocoa
200g/7oz Milk Chocolate minimum 35% Cocoa
300ml/ 1/2 pint Double Cream
Optional – 2Tbsp Bailey’s Chocolate or Bailey’s liqueur
Assorted sprinkles, stars and ebible glitter dust
Method : Preheat the oven 170C/150C fan, gas mark 3, 325F
Making the Cake:
First of all, butter the base and sides of a 10″ Springform cake tin. Line the base of the tin with baking parchment paper.
Sift the flour, cocoa, baking powder and salt together. These are your dry ingredients.
Crack all the eggs into a jug, add the vanilla extract and lightly beat with a fork to break up.
In a large bowl cream together the butter and sugars until light and fluffy.
Add one third of your dry ingredients and mix slowly, as they start to incorporate add half of your eggs. Continue mixing until all the ingredients are almost incorporated.
Repeat this step again.
Add the last of the dry ingredients until thoroughly mixed. Be careful not to overmix, as the cake will be heavy.
Fold in the sour cream to the chocolate cake batter.
Place the cake tin in the middle of the oven and bake for 50 minutes.
The cake is baked when an inserted skewer comes out clean. If after 50 minutes the cake is still not fully baked, place back in the oven and re-check at 5 minute intervals.
As soon as the cake is baked remove the oven.
Allow the cake to cool for 15 minutes before removing from the tin.
To remove, release the springform lever, remove the outer ring of the tin.
Place a cooling rack on top of the cake and invert.
The cake is now bottom side up on the cooling rack. Remove the tin base and gently peel off the baking parchment paper.
Place to one side and allow the cake to cool completely.
Making the topping:
Break or chop the chocolate into small chunks. Place in a heat proof bowl over a saucepan of barely simmering water (double boiler), ensuring the base of the bowl does not touch the water.
Add the cream. And stir. The more you stir the glossier the ganache will be.
The ganache is ready to use when it is thickened but still pourable (but not runny).
I tapped the cake stand a couple of times against the table, to release any air bubbles trapped in the ganache. As a result, the swirled effect at the bottom of the cake was a result of my tapping!
Decorating the Cake:
Get creative, use whatever decorations you like. Because the chocolate ganache is so gloriously glossy, it provides the perfect canvas.
I finished the cake with a dusting of holographic edible glitter.
Because more is more. Right??
I almost called this Chocoale Sparkle Cake ‘Starry, starry night’ (Vincent), after one of my very favourite songs by Don McLean!
Because of the glossy, sparkly nature of this cake, as well as the moist, deep chocolate flavour, with a lingering background hit of Bailey’s, this could easily make a beautiful alternative to traditional Christmas cake.
When I look at this Chocolate Sparkle Cake it just screams ‘Party’! The perfect chocolate, celebration cake.
Everyone loved this cake and we also celebrated the safe arrival of a friend’s baby with a slice. Because it is a rich cake, a little goes a long way, meaning there is more to share.
Also, it keeps really well in a cake tin for 5 days. And yes it did last that long!!
If you have enjoyed this recipe for Chocolate Sparkle Cake you may also like these:
I love to celebrate special occasions with a cake. Do you?
So, whatever you are making, baking and creating in your kitchens, have fun preparing and sharing your feast.
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