RECIPES BY Rhiannon Lambert

Chocolate Cake

  • 1 Hour 20 Minutes
  • 8-12
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Essential Ingredients

170g plain flour
150g sugar
75g cocoa powder
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
Pinch salt
265ml buttermilk (or 265ml milk & 1 tbsp lemon juice)
90ml vegetable oil
2 medium eggs
1 tsp vanilla essence

For the buttercream:
200g dark chocolate, melted
225g unsalted butter, room temp.
1 tsp vanilla essence
175g icing sugar
Mixed berries and white chocolate (for topping)


  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C. Line two 18cm round non-stick cake tins with baking paper and set aside.
  2. Prepare the buttermilk, if home making. Stir the lemon juice into the milk and leave to stand for 5 minutes.
  3. In a mixing bowl, sieve the flour and add the sugar, cocoa, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda, and salt. Combine with a spatula, or in a mixer on low speed.
  4. Beat the eggs, and combine with the buttermilk, vegetable oil and vanilla. Fold the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix well, scraping down the sides of the bowl. If using a mixer, slowly pour in the wet ingredients to the dry and combine on low speed. Mix thoroughly for a light and airy texture.
  5. Once the mixture is well combined and a smooth batter has formed, with some air bubbles appearing, pour the batter into your baking tins. For a thick 2-layered cake, divide equally between the two tins, or, for a 3-layered cake, pour two times the amount into one tin. Bake for 30-40 minutes, until risen and fluffy, and a wooden toothpick inserted into the centre comes out clean. The thinner cake will cook around 10 minutes faster than the thicker cake.
  6. Remove from the oven and leave to cool on a wire rack for at least 30 minutes, while you make your buttercream.
  7. Cream the butter in a mixing bowl or using a mixer until light and fluffy. Slowly add the sifted icing sugar and beat together for 3-4 minutes.
  8. Pour in the vanilla essence and the melted chocolate and continue beating for another 5 minutes until it forms a light whipped texture.
  9. Once the cakes are cooled, if making a 3-layer cake, slice down the middle of the thicker cake carefully to split it into two. If there is any size difference in your cake layers, place the thickest at the base.
  10. Spread the buttercream over the bottom layer, repeat for the middle layer (if making), and finally frost the top of the cake with the remaining buttercream. Top with raspberries, blueberries and grated white chocolate. Slice, and serve!