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by Susan Kosoff (St.Martin's press, 1989)

The baking section of my library extends for almost further than the eye can see - and that's the way I like it! 'Good Old-Fashioned Cakes" is just the sort of title to make one feel safe and cosy. I know that the Top Five section is focussing on chocolate right now, but you know you can't have too much chocolate, which is why I've chosen the MMC below:


This cake is dark, delicious, and very rich.  Serve skinny slices.


  • 1 1/4 cups flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 4 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 8 squares (8 ounces) semisweet chocolate, melted and cooled
  • 1 cup (one 6-ounce package) chocolate chips
  • 1 cup chopped pecans
  • Unsweetened whipped cream



  1. Position rack in centre of oven; preheat to 350F. Grease a 9-inch spring-form pan; dust with flour.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk or stir together flour and salt.
  3. In a large bowl, and using electric beaters, cream butter until light and smooth.  Add sugar in several additions, beating until mixture is light and fluffy.  Gradually add eggs, beating until mixture has the consistency of lightly whipped cream. Stir in vanilla and melted chocolate.
  4. Using a large spatula, gradually stir dry ingredients into chocolate mixture until well blended; stir in chocolate chips and pecans.  Pour batter into prepared pan, spreading evenly.
  5. Bake 35 to 40 minutes. The cake is done when the surface looks dry and cracked; underneath, the centre will be soft and gooey.  Remove pan to wire rack, and cool 10 minutes.  Run a knife around sides of cake to loosen it from pan.  Remove outer rim of pan; finish cooling on rack.  Slide a long metal spatula under cake to loosen it from bottom of pan; transfer cake to a serving platter. Serve with unsweetened whipped cream