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RECIPE: Turn a Chocolate Fudge Cake into So Much More with Donna Hay in ‘Basics to Brilliance’

September 25, 2017

Australia’s bestselling cookbook author returns with a stunning new book, Basics to Brilliance – and a TV series tie in. In Basics to Brilliance, Donna Hay shows home cooks of any ability how to build their confidence. Each basic recipe is followed by clever variations and simple flavour change-ups, so one recipe becomes many and your repertoire naturally grows. A luxurious hardback, with stunning photography featuring 200+ recipes, this not only makes the perfect gift, but is a book you’ll want to treasure forever.

Chocolate Fudge Cake

SERVES: 8-10


250g Unsalted butter,
300g chopped 300g dark (70%) chocolate, chopped
2 tbs Dutch Cocoa, sifted
125ml Milk
6 Eggs
220g Caster (superfine) sugar
85g Brown sugar
150g plain (all purpose flour)


1. Place the butter and chocolate in a medium saucepan over low heat and stir until melted and smooth. Add the cocoa and milk and stir to combine. Set aside to cool slightly.

2. Place the eggs and both the sugars in the bowl of an electric mixer and whisk on high speed for 12–15 minutes or until pale, thick and creamy.

3. Add the chocolate mixture to the egg mixture and whisk, scraping down the sides of the bowl, until just combined. Reduce the speed to low, add the flour and whisk until just combined.

4. Preheat oven to 160°C (325°F).

5. Lightly grease a 22cm round springform cake tin and line with non-stick baking paper.

6. Pour the cake mixture into the tin and bake for 1 hour – 1 hour 10 minutes or until set+. Allow to cool completely in the tin.

7. Remove the cake from the tin to serve.

+ The cake is ready when it feels set to
the touch. If tested, a wooden skewer
will not come out clean – the cake will
set with a fudgy centre as it cools.

Molton Chocolate Puddings



1 x quantity chocolate fudge cake mixture (see basic recipe above)


1. Preheat oven to 200°C (400°F). Heat a baking tray in the oven for 5 minutes.

2.Lightly grease 12 x ¾-cup-capacity (180ml) metal pudding moulds or ovenproof ramekins.

3.Pour ½ cup (125ml) of the cake mixture into each mould.

4.Transfer to the hot baking tray and bake for 12 minutes or until just set to the touch.

5.Allow to cool in the moulds for 1 minute before turning out onto serving plates.

6.Dust with cocoa and serve immediately.

These melt-in-your-mouth puddings are
best served warm, either dusted in cocoa
NOTE or topped with berries and double cream.
+ This recipe begins with uncooked cake
mixture – simply prepare the basic recipe
until the end of step 3.

Chocolate fudge and Salted Caramel Layer Cake



1 x quantity chocolate fudge cake mixture (see basic recipe)
1 x quantity whipped chocolate ganache
100g) creamy caramel
black sea salt flakes or regular sea salt flakes for sprinkling


1. Preheat oven to 160°C (325°F).

2. Lightly grease 2 x 20cm round springform cake tins and line with non-stick baking paper.

3. Divide the cake mixture evenly between the tins and bake for 30–35 minutes or until set to the touch.

4.Allow to cool completely in the tins. Refrigerate for 1 hour or until chilled.

5. Remove the cakes from the tins and, using a serrated knife, cut each cake in half horizontally.

6.To assemble, place a base layer of cake, cut-side up, on a cake stand or plate.

7.Spread with ½ cup (125ml) of the ganache and drizzle with 2 tablespoons of the caramel.

8.Repeat twice more and top with the final layer of cake, cut-side down.

9.Spread the remaining ganache onto the cake and sprinkle with salt to serve.

+ This recipe begins with uncooked cake
mixture – simply prepare the basic recipe
until the end of step 3.
++ You can buy black sea salt flakes
at specialty food shops and some
supermarkets. Substitute with regular
sea salt flakes, if you prefer.

It’s a good idea to use the measurements
given when spreading the ganache and
drizzling the caramel. It makes for a more
stable finish and nice even layers, which
look great when the cake is sliced.

Basics to Brilliance

by Donna Hay

Out 5th October

Harper 360



RRP £25

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