Old Fashioned Chocolate Cake

When living in France, I loved the homely cakes my French neighbours baked, as opposed to the great patisserie you buy in the specialist shops. We took it in turns to make a traditional cake to have with coffee or tea. If it was with tea, it was always a fruit flavoured one or a tisane, never our black tea [except in our house]. This is one my next door neighbour made regularly; it's her grandmother's recipe, and she called it a 'Gateau au chocolat a l'ancienne'. I make it in a loaf tin instead of in the usual 'moule a manque', the traditional round French cake tin. It's great with an afternoon cuppa, or as a dessert with some ice cream or creme anglaise. It's normally made using cooking or dessert chocolate [of which there are many good makes in France], but I use dark chocolate from a supermarket, not an expensive bar.
Here's the recipe - it's so easy to make and is delicious.

150g dessert or plain chocolate
3 eggs
100g caster sugar
60g plain flour
1 tspn baking powder
50g ground almonds
80g butter
also some butter to grease the tin

Preheat oven 200C/gas 6

Grease a 900g loaf tin [or a 20cm round one if you prefer] with some butter.

Break the chocolate into pieces and melt over a saucepan of simmering water with the 80g of butter and 5 tbspn of water.
In a bowl, beat the eggs with the sugar till it's white and fluffy. Then add the flour with the baking powder, the ground almonds and the melted chocolate. Mix well together.
Pour into the tin and bake for 30-35 mins.
Leave to cool in the tin for 5 mins before putting on a wire rack.

I forgot to say that I added a few nuts, but I didn't have enough, so in hindsight, it would have been better without them! That's my Mum's old flour sifter in the photo, but I use it for icing sugar, otherwise I make an awful mess!
The cake is light and has a good chocolate flavour. It's a useful recipe to have when you want a quick cake.


Lovely. This is absolutely my kind of baking. I do enjoy the more complex patisserie but this is the kind of cake that just feels right to me. I've never quite learnt to appreciate the refined French tisane, though. Give me some strong Assam any day.
Snowy said…
I love fruit teas, but tisanes, not so much.
Hello said…
Looks delicious xx

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