• Matthew Evan's chocolate cake (Benito Martin)Source: Benito Martin

This cake won me third place at the Bream Creek Show. I was so excited I didn’t stop bragging about it for a week. 






Skill level

Average: 3.4 (37 votes)

Topped with a glossy layer of chocolate ganache, this rich cake is perfect on its own for afternoon tea, or jazz it up with fresh berries and serve with thick cream for a decadent dessert.


  • 125 g unsalted butter, softened
  • 150 g brown sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla essence
  • 3 eggs
  • 100 g dark chocolate, melted
  • 100 g sour cream
  • 2 tbsp cocoa
  • 100 g self-raising flour
  • 125 g almond meal


  • 100 ml cream
  • 250 g dark chocolate, broken into small bits

Cook's notes

Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.


Preheat the oven to 170°C. Grease and line a 22 cm springform cake tin or similar.

Cream the butter and sugar with the vanilla. Beat in the eggs one at time. If the mix looks a bit curdled, don’t worry, it isn’t; it’ll come back together when we add the flour, if not before. Beat in the chocolate, then the sour cream until just combined. Fold in the sifted cocoa and flour and then the almond meal. Scrape into the cake tin and smooth the top a bit.

Bake in preheated oven for about 30 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. Ice with the ganache (see below).

To make the ganache, heat the cream in a small saucepan and when it comes to the boil, whisk in the chocolate, returning to the heat if necessary to melt it. Stir until the mixture is smooth. Allow to set just enough to be able to spread over the cake.


Image by Benito Martin. Styling by Lynsey Fryers. Food preparation by O Tama Carey. Creative concept by Belinda So.

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