Chocolate and Raspberry Meringue Cake

I was starting to come down from last weeks cakey high when I published the post on the Nigel Slater event but then didn't the main man himself go and tweet me saying he had read my blog post! Talk about making me giddy! I waffle on here and I have no idea if people actually read my ramblings but Nigel Slater did! Look, here is a screenshot of it for proof!


 Anyway, the whole point of this post was to share the recipe of the cake that I made for that event. The theme was fruit and veg but to be honest with you I never think if adding veg to a cake, I know you can but it goes against the grain for me, I'm all about the sugary goodness (or badness?) that a cake consists of. I decided to go down the fruit route and straight away I though raspberries and chocolate, they really are a perfect match. I know I have made a chocolate and raspberry cake before but this time it needed to be extra special and that's when I thought of meringue. I have used meringue in other cakes (here and here) so I felt like it would be a crowd pleaser.

I actually baked the meringue separately cos it was the only way I could guarantee it and the sponge would be cooked properly. Lots of recipes say you can bake the meringue on top of the sponge but I worry about the cake sinking or being over/under baked.

I did intend to try a different chocolate cake recipe instead of old faithful but I had too many other things going on and I knew this was a quick sponge I could make on an evening after work without too much stress and faffing. I am determined to explore new chocolate cake recipes though - it's Himself's birthday on Saturday so I'm going to make a different chocolate cake for him.

Also, one day I will get the scales out when I make this chocolate cake. Usually I'm a stickler for scales but this is one recipe where measuring cups really work.


Chocolate and Raspberry Meringue Cake

2.5 cups SR flour
2 cups soft light brown sugar
1 cup cocoa
2tsp baking powder
1 cup veg/sunflower oil
1.5 cups milk
1/2 tsp vanilla extract 
3 eggs 

  • Preheat the oven to 160C (fan)

  • Grease and line two 20cm round cake tins

  • Put all the ingredients in a bowl and whisk until combined 

  • Divide between the two tins and bake in the oven for 40mins or until a skewer inserted comes out clean
Meringue
2 egg whites
115g caster sugar
1tsp corn flour
1tsp white wine vinegar

  • Preheat the oven to 140C (fan)
  • Draw round a 20cm cake tin onto greaseproof paper and place on a baking sheet (you can glue it down with a bit of the meringue mixture once it's made)
  • Whisk the egg whites until stiff and cloud-like
  • Add the sugar a teaspoon at a time while whisking at the same time (this is where a mixer is your best friend but if not you can use an electric whisk with one hand and a teaspoon with the other)
  • Once all the sugar has been added and the meringue looks glossy mix the corn flour and vinegar together and add to the mix. 
  • Spoon onto the template making sure to stay within the circle you have drawn
  • Place in the oven and immediately turn down to 130C (fan)
  • Bake for around 45mins when the shell should be firm to the touch
  • Leave to cool in the oven 

Buttercream
160g softened unsalted butter
500g icing sugar
A few tbsp milk
A few tbsp seedless raspberry jam

  • Beat the butter, icing sugar and milk together for around 5mins til pale and mousse like. Add the jam a bit a time until it tastes raspberry enough.
  • Add some more milk if it isn't smooth enough to spread.

To decorate
Small punnett of raspberries 
Freeze dried raspberries meringue pieces (you will find yourself with meringue scraps after assembling the cake)


  • Level both sponges so the have a flat top (I swear by this cake leveller from Lakeland)
  • Add a thin layer of buttercream to the first sponge, place the meringue on to it and trim off any overhanging bits.
  • Don't worry if the meringue gets a bit crushed as a top layer of sponge will end up on top of it anyway.
  • Spread some buttercream on top of the meringue and sprinkle over a few raspberries
  • Add the top layer of sponge and coat all of the exterior of the cake in a thin layer of buttercream known as a crumb coat.
  • At this stage put the cake in the fridge for 30mins to firm up.
  • Once firm add another thicker layer of buttercream to the whole cake and using a patterned scraper (optional) pull in along the side of the cake to create a nice design.
  • Decorate the top with sprinkles of freeze dried raspberries, leftover meringue pieces and a handful of fresh raspberries.

I know this cake has a lot of steps but honestly it is not difficult to make. I don't like overly complicated bakes as you end up making mistakes or losing heart with it. If you want to you can make the sponge and meringue the night before and then decorate the next day.

Enjoy! 





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