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Chocolate Meringue Cake - source Donna Hay Issue 74 April/May 2014 - Image Angie Wilson at GnomeAngel.com

When I first saw this Chocolate Meringue Cake in the Donna Hay Magazine (Issue 74 April/May 2014) I practically licked the page.

Now I’m not necessarily a fan of meringue but this had me intrigued and I just had to find an excuse to have a go at making it. (Although really is there ever an excuse needed to make something chocolate?)

I do a fair bit of baking and I would consider myself a confident dabbler. However I’ve never made meringue. For some reason in my head I thought it was going to be harder than it was – it’s totally easy (and looks really impressive). I think I’ll be making us mini pavlovas this summer!

This cake is really easy to make, if a little bit involved. It has an impressive look to it when it’s done and would make the best wow dessert for dinner parties. I’m adding this to the rotation, so be prepared if you’re coming to our house you’re most likely going to be served this!

Chocolate Meringue Cake - source Donna Hay Issue 74 April/May 2014 - Image Angie Wilson at GnomeAngel.com

Chocolate Meringue Cake

240g dark chocolate, chopped

180g unsalted butter, chopped

2 eggs

4 eggs, separated

½ cup (90g) brown sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/3 cup (50g) plain (all-purpose) flour, sifted

½ teaspoon baking powder, sifted

1/3 cup (40g) almond meal (ground almonds)

1 cup (220g) caster (superfine) sugar

1 teaspoon white vinegar

3 teaspoons cornflour (cornstarch), sifted

¼ cup (25g) Dutch cocoa, sifted, plus extra for dusting

1. Preheat over to 160°C. Spray a 24cm round springform cake tin with non-stick cooking spray. Line the base with non-stick baking paper and set aside.

2. Melt the chocolate and butter together in a medium saucepan over a low heat. Remember to stir occasionally to stop it from burning. Once it is melted and of a smooth consistency remove from heat and allow to cool slightly.

3. Using an electric mixer, whisk together the eggs, extra egg yolks, brown sugar and vanilla until pale and thick. (This should take about 3-4 minutes.) Once mixture is pale and thick, gently fold in the chocolate mixture, flour, baking powder and almond meal.

4. Pour the mixture into the prepared tin and bake for 35 – 40 minutes and then remove from over and set aside. Increase the oven temperature to 180°C.

5. While the cake is baking make the meringue. In a clean electric mixer bowl whisk the extra egg whites on high until soft peaks form. While the whisk is still going slowly spoon in the sugar and continue to whisk until it is all dissolved.

6. Once the sugar is dissolved add the white vinegar. Whisk for a further 2 – 3 minutes until the meringue is thick and glossy.  Shift the cocoa and cornflour into the meringue and then gently fold through until well combined.

7. Once the meringue is ready spoon on to the top of the partially cooked cake, spread evenly. Return the cake to the oven and bake for a further 20 – 25 minutes or until the meringue is golden and crisp.

8. Remove from oven and allow the cake to stand at room temperature for 15 – 20 minutes before gently running a small knife around the edge and removing from the ring. (This cake is supposed to look rustic and uneven – do be alarmed if it cracks or collapses a little.)

9. Allow the cake to cool at room temperature and refigerate for 2 hours before serving. Dust with extra cocoa to serve.

Serves: 8 – 10 people

Source: Donna Hay Magazine Issue 74 April/May 2014

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