Wednesday, 12 October 2011

Chocolate Malteser Cake

Continuing my quest to bake Nigella's chocolate cake hall of fame list... minus Michelle this time because this cake is full of gluten and Michelle is allergic to the substance.

My friend Mark told me that this is the kind of cake that makes you smile. And it's true. It's impossible to eat this cake and not smile... The sponge is moist and the buttercream icing is just divine. It's made of butter (obviously), icing sugar, a little cocoa and Horlicks which gives a comforting and not overpowering malty taste to the icing. And the crown-like chocolate Maltesers do look beautiful...

It's my birthday on Friday and I am having several friends over for dinner. I have planned something special for them... though thinking about it now, I think I must have completely lost the plot. I plan to surprise my friends on my birthday, not the other way around... well, but I don't know. We shall see.

Have a great night/morning/afternoon... wherever you are....

Chocolate Malteser Cake
Recipe by Nigella Lawson
Makes 8 - 10 slices

For the cake
150 grams soft brown sugar
100 grams caster sugar
3 large eggs
175 ml milk
15 grams unsalted butter
2 tablespoons Horlicks powder
175 grams plain flour
25 grams cocoa, sieved
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda

For the icing and decoration
250 grams icing sugar
1 teaspoon cocoa
45 grams Horlicks
125 grams soft unsalted butter
2 tablespoons boiling water
2 x 37 grams packets Maltesers

Preheat the oven to 170 C. Butter and line two 20 cm loose-bottomed sandwich cake tins with baking parchment.

Whisk together the sugars and eggs until light and frothy. Measure the dry ingredients in a bowl. Heat the milk, butter and Horlicks powder until the butter has melted and the mixture is hot but not boiling. Add this to the eggs and fold in the dry ingredients. Divide the cake batter evenly between the two cake tins and bake in the oven for 25 minutes, by which time the cakes should have risen and will spring back when pressed gently. Let them cool on a rack for 5 - 10 minutes and then turn them out of their tins.

Once the cakes are cold, get on with the icing. Like Nigella, I also used a food processor, so there is not need to sieve the icing sugar. Put the sugar, cocoa and Horlicks powder into the food processor and blitz to remove all lumps. Add the butter and process again. Stop, scrape the sides and start again, pouring the hot water down the funnel with the motor running until you have a smooth buttercream.

Sandwich the cold sponges with half of the buttercream, and then ice the top with the remaining, creating a swirly pattern rather than a smooth surface. Stud the outside edge with Maltesers or which-ever way that pleases you.


  1. Michael,,,the cake look delicious,i love chocolate,,,and wish you a happy birthday and have fun with your friends.

  2. That's one delicious looking cake, Michael! Just wish I had a slice of it now. It's wonderful to treat your friends to a surprise on your birthday! What a blast and here's wishing you a great Happy Birthday!

  3. My invite must have been lost in the post? Cake looks yummy. Happy Birthday Michael. I hope you have a wonderful day and let us know about the great meal too!

  4. Happy early birthday, Michael!!! (good month to have a birthday by the way.. mines on the 20th.. I knew we were kindred spirits!!!)
    The cake looks to die for... I would so love it if someone made that for me for my birthday (hint, hint!! lol)

  5. looks amazing!!!! my father in law is a malterser-a-holic...i will have to make this for him! hope you have a great birthday! :)

  6. Happy Birthday dear Michael! The cake looks fabulous... I'm not sure if I can get Horlicks in Australia?? It seems like quite an important ingredient. Man I love maltesers. I think I might have to run up the road and get some. It'll be my cheers to you on your birthday. xx

  7. What a superb looking birthday cake ... and quite frankly what better cake to bake, Nigella will never let us down!

  8. Happy Birthday! The cake looks gorgeous! I want to pick off the candies from the top :)

  9. I couldn't decide which one to comment on but I came to the cake, naturally. How did you get 3 cakes? Lucky. Hope your b'day was magical.