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Tilly's Table's deliciously rich Sunken Chocolate Cake for winter days

Tilly's Table's Sunken Chocolate Cake has been bookmarked in my phone since I saw it on her socials earlier this year. This week we finally had the time and the perfect occasion to make it, Duncan's birthday. Tilly's Sunken Chocolate Cake is the perfect combination of dense, fudgey texture and deliciously rich flavour. As I whipped the five egg whites and folded them into the chocolatey batter there was serious anticipation. Tilly and I met at a Recipe Writing Workshop with Anneka Manning and Sophie Hansen at The Convent a couple of years back. Since then Tilly has created a beautiful webstore of Botanical Linens and Prints and Seasonal Baking Recipes and wrote and photographed a baking story for the May issue of Country Style magazine. I hope you have the opportunity to make this delightful cake for loved ones very soon.

 From Tilly's Table The Plain-Cake Appreciation Society {edition 49}, Sunken Chocolate Cake.

"The end of this week, and the end of first term, demanded a serious cake. I found only chocolate would do and this one - a crackly, sunken, dense cocoa number - seemed only fitting. Rustic in the extreme, but rather refined in the eating. Serve with double cream or just dive in with a spoon." 

What you need: 360g dark chocolate, 150g unsalted butter, 2 tbsp (40ml) strong espresso coffee, 1 tsp vanilla paste, Pinch of salt, 180g caster sugar, 5 eggs, large, separated, 1 tbsp plain flour.
What you do: Preheat your oven to 170°C (fan-forced) and grease and line the base and sides of a 22cm springform pan with butter and baking paper.
Place the butter and chocolate in a small saucepan over very low heat. I like to use a double boiler. Stir constantly until chocolate and butter have melted and are well combined. Remove the pan from the heat and allow to cool.
Combine cooled chocolate, coffee, vanilla, salt, half the caster sugar, egg yolks, and flour in a large mixing bowl and whisk to combine.
With a stand mixer, whisk egg whites to soft peaks. Add remaining caster sugar, a tablespoon at a time, and continue to mix until egg whites hold stiff peaks.
Add a third of the egg whites to the chocolate mixture and whisk to combine. Add remaining meringue and fold through gently, trying not to knock too much air out of the egg whites.
Pour batter into the lined cake tin and spread gently using a spatula. Place tin in the oven and cook for 30-35 minutes, until cake has souffled and formed a crust, but is still a bit wobbly underneath.
Remove cake from the oven and allow to cool completely in the tin – it will continue to cook as it cools. The cake with deflate and sink as it cools, creating a  crackly, rustic look.

Serve at room temperature for a mousse-like texture, or refrigerate and serve cold for a dense, fudgy cake.

Megan Trousdale
Megan Trousdale


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