Almost everyone loves chocolate cake and those that don't, can't have had a good one. It is entirely possible to go your whole life on these shores mistaking chocolate cake for that quintessentially British abomination that I like to call brown cake. Brown cake starts its sorry little life with great potential: butter, eggs, caster sugar and self-raising flour. If, at this point in its cakey journey, a slug of vanilla extract was thrown into the mix, I'd start to get interested. But, alas, it isn't to be. Brown cake has a far less joyous fate. Instead, a dusting of cocoa is added, just enough to dye the cake a pale and pathetic shade of brown, but not enough to actually add much in the way of flavour. I can't abide anything which tastes of nothing. Lemon cakes should be lemony, vanilla cakes should be vanilla-y and chocolate cakes should taste of chocolate and not of the colour brown.
This gluten-free chocolate fudge cake contains actual chocolate and actual cocoa and, as a result, actually tastes of actual chocolate, but don't be scared. This cake is a crowd pleaser with all, from dark chocolate lovers and children, right through to the "It looks a bit rich" brigade. In essence, this cake targets a wide demographic. It is sticky, but in no way sickly and it is chocolate-y without a trace of bitterness. It is a cake as happily scoffed by two year olds as ninety year olds and has converted many over the years who have professed not to be chocolate cake fans.
It is so incredibly versatile and I have made variations of this cake for countless birthdays and parties and all the other times when nothing else but chocolate cake will do. Halve the quantity for 6" sandwich tins, double it for 10" or use the amount given below for cupcakes. It keeps exceptionally well in an airtight container for up to a week, but you’ll have to have unusual levels of restraint if you can manage to make it last that long.