|To sink one is careless...|
I just don't seem to have much luck with chocolate cakes. I didn't like Nigella's chocolate cake. I was disappointed with the Hummingbird chocolate cupcakes. I don't want to tempt fate, but I've always had very good results with brownies. But I can't hand on heart say that I've found a chocolate cake recipe that does it for me. My go-to recipe is the BBC Good Food Ultimate Chocolate Cake and I only didn't make that because of the complicated delivery method that this cake required.
There were rave reviews of the cake on Dan's forums and my lovely virtual friend Sadia of Baking Elements fame told me she'd never bake another chocolate cake after trying this one. I didn't need convincing any further.
Because it's easier to take the iPad into the kitchen (Short and Sweet is a bit unwieldy) I found the recipe online and followed along with that. Now, in hindsight, having just cross-referenced the book with the online recipe, I may have discovered where I went wrong...
|Upside down and two slices in doesn't look so bad...|
Because I wanted to share this nugget of information with you (the web version doesn't tell you this) I snapped a pic of the book recipe on my phone so I could have it at my side while I typed. Then I decided to compare the ingredient list with the online one. And it's significantly different in the flour area.
The version on the Guardian website was published in 2005. Six years before the book. The ingredient list looks the same at first glance until you get to the eggs. The older recipe uses one egg rather than two and 50g less flour (before you add the extra two tablespoons recommended by the book) and the new recipe adds two teaspoons of glycerine although it unhelpfully doesn't tell you what difference this made.
With my Miss Marple skills working on overdrive, I can only assume that with the inclusion of the codicil on saving the cake from sinking, Lepard has obviously come up with a slightly less risky version of the cake. I picked the wrong one and ended up with not one, but two sunken loaves.
|Third slice in and it just crumbled....|
I will write this one off as a lesson learned. And if I'm honest, I'm not sure I'd make it again. I cut the ends off of one of the loaves and served it with fruit and yogurt as dessert. It was okay, but it wasn't all that in my humble opinion and didn't have the 'Wow!' factor that so many of Lepard's other recipes had. Maybe if it hadn't sunk and I'd gone on to make the Treacle Chocolate Icing to top it with, I may have enjoyed it more.
Short and Sweet still remains my favourite go-to book of the moment. But I would now advise caution when using some of the older online recipes. If you own the book, it may be well worth checking for differences.