Recipe: Chocolate & Guinness Cake

It may come as a surprise to you, as I’ve declared my love for chocolate many times, but I’ve never really enjoyed a chocolate cake. Give me a brownie, I’ll be happy. Give me a muffin and I’ll enjoy it. But I’d never, ever choose a chocolate cake in a tearoom. This cake has changed all of that. This cake is, without a single doubt, the absolute best chocolate cake I’ve ever eaten.

The Guinness in this cake adds a beautiful rich dimension to the chocolate. It mellows out the sweetness, intensifies the cocoa flavours and adds a deep, dark colour to the sponge. Not only that, it keeps it wonderfully moist, meaning the cake lasted us nearly a week before we managed to get through it (this is the problem when you bake a large cake between the two of you!). But fear not, whilst the Guinness does add some extra flavour, it’s not an imposing taste. I’m by no-means a fan of drinking the stuff, but I couldn’t get enough of this Chocolate Guinness Cake.

Recipe (Makes a 20cm round cake serving 8 generously)

  • 175g self-raising flour
  • ¼ teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
  • 275g dark brown soft sugar
  • 110g very soft butter
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 50g cocoa powder, sifted
  • 200ml Guinness
  • For the icing – 300g icing sugar, 100g soft butter, 40g cocoa powder, 40ml milk, 40g dark chocolate

Sift the flour, baking powder and bicarbonate of soda into a large bowl, then add the rest of the ingredients, except for the Guinness. Now, using a whisk, beat well until you have a smooth creamy consistency. Finally gradually stir in the Guinness. Divide the mixture between two greased and lined 20cm tins and bake at 180C for about 30–35 minutes. Allow to cool fully.

For the icing, sift together the icing sugar and cocoa powder. Add the butter and beat well until coming together. Add the milk a tablespoon at a time. Melt the chocolate, then gradually add to the icing mixture. Continue beating for 5-10 minutes or until creamy and fluffy – it’s far easier to make this in a stand mixer! Use to sandwich the cakes together and cover the top. This icing recipe is also wonderful on cupcakes.

It’s also rather good warmed slightly and served with ice-cream…

Are you a fan of chocolate cake? Have you tried baking with beer?