Quadruple Chocolate Loaf Cake
1 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup cocoa
1 1/3 cups sugar
1 1/2 sticks soft unsalted butter
1 tablespoon good-quality vanilla extract
1/3 cup sour cream
1/2 cup boiling water
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips or morsels
1 teaspoon cocoa
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup sugar
1-ounce dark chocolate (from a thick bar if possible), cut into splinters of varying thickness, for garnish
Special equipment: 2-pound loaf tin (approximately 9 1/2 by 4 1/2 by 3 inches deep), lined with greased foil, pressed into the corners and with some overhang at the top. Alternatively, substitute a silicon loaf tin, no foil lining necessary.
- Take whatever you need out of the refrigerator so that all ingredients can come to room temperature.
- Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F, putting in a baking sheet as you do so.
- Put the flour, baking soda, cocoa, sugar, butter, eggs, vanilla, and sour cream into the processor and blitz until a smooth, satiny brown batter.
- Scrape down with a rubber spatula and process again while pouring the boiling water down the funnel.
- Switch it off, then remove the lid and the well-scraped double-bladed knife and, still using your rubber spatula, stir in the chocolate chips or morsels.
- Scrape and pour the batter into the prepared loaf tin and put into the oven, cooking for about 1 hour.
- When ready, the loaf will be risen and split down the middle and a cake-tester will pretty well come out clean.
- Not long before the cake is due out of the oven (when it has had about 45 to 50 minutes), put the syrup ingredients of cocoa, water and sugar into a small saucepan and boil for about 5 minutes, to give a thick syrup.
- Take the cake out of the oven and sit it on a cooling rack, still in the tin, and pierce here and there with a cake tester.
- Pour the syrup over the cake.
- Let the cake become completely cold and then slip out of its tin, removing the foil as you do so. Sit on an oblong or other plate.
- Sprinkle the chocolate splinters over the top of the sticky surface of the cake.