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Honey Chocolate Cake

Asked by yjoseph. Answered on 11th February 2012

Full question

I have now tried 3 times to make the Honey Chocolate Cake (from Feast, p276) and each time it's sunk in the middle. The first time I did it by hand and forgot to put the water in. The second time, I did add the water, same result. Third time did it with an electric whisk, same result. I don't know what I'm doing wrong!

I made the Honey Chocolate Cake twice, once with the manual method and once in the food processor. Both cakes subsidied to look more like a flan case rather than the cake in the picture! I was devastated as every other Nigella recipe I have tried has worked out perfectly. I have obviously done something wrong but what? Having read and re-read the recipe, I cannot see that I have deviated in any way from the instructions or ingredients. The mixture looked great and the batter was very smooth prior to baking and the "cake" tasted wonderful just sank like the proverbial stone when it came out of the oven! Please can you help as I would dearly love to try this again. Thank you

Our answer

The Honey Chocolate Cake has a fairly liquid batter and it does seem that sometimes this can give variable results across different ovens. If you find that it is sinking then you may get better results by adding 1 teaspoon of baking powder to the flour (but still use the bicarbonate of soda) and reducing the water to 125ml (1/2 cup). With slightly less water you may also find that the baking time is reduced from 1 hour to around 55 minutes.

If you are covering the top of the cake with foil then do this very carefully. The cake centre isn't always fully set after 45 minutes and if the cake tin is pulled forward in the oven quickly it can get a gust of cold air from the outside which can also contribute to the centre sinking.

The cake is very moist and still delicious even if it does sink a little.

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