This rich chocolatey truffle cake makes the perfect Christmas table centrepiece. The intricate chocolate trees are surprisingly easy to make and stand out beautifully against the white frosting. A Christmas take on chocolate cake which is perfect for the chocoholics or people who don’t like traditional fruit cake!
For the cake mix:
250g plain chocolate chopped into small chunks
330ml semi-skimmed milk
550g soft light brown sugar
210g unsalted butter
365g plain flour
15g cocoa powder
1tsp bicarbonate of soda
1tsp baking powder
For the chocolate ganache filling:
150ml double cream
150g dark chocolate
1tsp unsalted butter
1tsp vanilla extract
For the white chocolate buttercream frosting:
1oog white chocolate
140g unsalted butter
140g icing sugar
For the tree decorations:
Chocolate of your choice – I used 50g of plain, milk and white chocolate.
- Preheat your oven to 160° C and line two 8 inch cake tins with greaseproof paper.
- Make the chocolate tree decorations to give sufficient setting time:
Line your work surface with a sheet of greaseproof paper.
Melt the chocolate of your choice and put into a disposable piping bag. Snip the end of the piping bag to create a fine nib.
Pipe out trees onto the greaseproof paper and place in the fridge for a couple of hours to set.
- Next, make the chocolate cake batter:
Place 285g of the light brown sugar, milk and chocolate in a saucepan and bring to the boil whilst stirring.
Cream together the remaining light brown sugar with the butter.
Beat the eggs and add to the butter and sugar mixture whilst whisking.
Sift the flour, bicarbonate of soda, cocoa powder and baking powder into the butter mixture and combine.
Add the heated chocolate mixture gradually and mix until the cake batter is combined.
Split the mixture between the two cake tins and put in the oven for 30-40 minutes until the cakes are springy to the touch.
- While the cakes are in the oven make the chocolate ganache filling:
Heat the cream, vanilla extract, butter and chocolate in a saucepan until the ingredients are fully melted and combined.
Take the mixture off the heat and whisk the mixture until smooth and thickened.
- Next, make the white chocolate frosting:
Melt the white chocolate (either over hot water in a pan or in the microwave) and beat with the butter and icing sugar until smooth.
- Once the sponges have cooled sufficiently, it is time to assemble the cake:
Place the bottom sponge onto your serving plate then smother with the chocolate ganache.
Sandwich the second cake layer on top of the filling.
Use a spatula to apply the white chocolate frosting to the cake exterior and top.
Carefully peel the chocolate trees off the greaseproof paper and place around the exterior of the cake – you can gently push them into the frosting to hold them in place.