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08 March 2009

Rich Chocolate Cake with Spiced Berries and Whipped Cream

The cake recipe that I use here is the "almost flourless chocolate cake" from Marie Claire Food Taste 101. But I have added a few extra touches. One of these special touches is wattleseed which matches brilliantly with chocolate. The other is cassia which is like cinnamon, but more aromatic.

I was given the spiced berries recipe by a saleswoman at Herbie's Spices when I went in looking for a spice to go with the dessert. I ended up buying "Fragrant Sweet Spices" which is a wonderfully fragrant spice blend. It was marvellous.

The cake can be made in advance, as can the berries. I made both in the morning on the day of my Sunday Lunch.

Chocolate cake


Butter for greasing

100g dark couverture or good quality cooking chocolate

1/2 cup cocoa plus extra for dusting

1 cup caster sugar

1/2 cup boiling water

2 large eggs separated, plus 2 eggwhites extra

1/4 cup almond meal

2 1/2 tablespoons plain flour, plus extra for dusting

1 teaspoon cassia or cinnamon

1 teaspoon wattleseed

1 vanilla pod split down the middle and seeds removed

1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar

Spiced berries to serve

Whipped cream to serve


Preheat the oven to 180 degrees. Grease a 20cm springform cake tin, line the base with baking paper and dust the sides lightly with flour.

Put the chocolate, cocoa and 3/4 cup of the sugar in a large heatproof bowl and pour over the water. Stir until the chocolate melts and sugar dissolves. Beat in the egg yolks then stir in the almond meal, flour, wattleseed, cassia and vanilla seeds.

In a separate clean bowl, use clean beaters to beat the eggwhites with the cream of tartar until soft peaks form. Beat in the remaining sugar until stiff. Using a metal spoon, fold the eggwhite, in two batches, until the chocolate mixture until just combined. Spoon the mixture into the prepared tin.

Bake on a lower rung on the oven for 30-35 minutes (I found I needed 40 minutes) or until a few moist crumbs cling to a skewer inserted into the centre of the cake. Remove from the oven, then leave to cool in the tin on a wire rack. Carefully turn out the cake, remove the paper and invert onto a plate so it is the right way up. Dust with cocoa and serve with the spiced berries and whipped cream.

Spiced berries


1 cup water

1/2 cup sugar

2 teaspoons Fragrant Sweet Spices

300g frozen raspberries


Heat the sugar and water in a small saucepan, stirring until sugar has dissolved. Simmer, uncovered, for 5 minutes, then remove from the heat and stir in spice mix.

Leave to cool.

Place thawed berries in a bowl, pour cooled syrup over and refrigerate. Serve with chocolate cake and whipped cream.

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