What will you feed your Valentine!
Sticky Prune Chocolate Cake
250 gms butter, cut into pieces and extra for greasing,
200 gms pitted prunes roughly chopped,
50 ml brandy,
1 tbsp vanilla essence,
250 gms dark chocolate (preferably 70% cocoa),
250 gms powdered brown sugar,
1/2 tsp. salt.
100 gms dark chocolate (preferably 70% cocoa),
2 tbsp cocoa powder.
100 gms cream cheese,
50 gms butter at room temperature.
Preheat the oven to 170c, gas mark 3. Grease and line the base and sides of a 20 cm springform or loose bottomed cake tin. Wrap the outside of the tin a double layer of foil and find a roasting dish large and deep enough to accommodate the tin.
Put the prunes in a shallow dish and cover with the brandy and vanilla essence. Set aside until needed. Melt the butter and chocolate together in a heatproof bowl set over a pan of barely simmering water. Stir to combine, and then set aside to cool slightly. In another bowl, use electric beaters to whisk the eggs, sugar, and salt until pale, fluffy and doubled in volume.
Fold the melted chocolate and butter into the eggs, followed by the prunes and their juices. Pour into the prepared cake tin, place into the roasting dish and set on the oven shelf. Carefully pour boiling water into the roasting dish until it reaches halfway up the sides of the cake tin. Bake for 55 minutes, until set but still with a slight wobble in the center. Transfer the cake from the water bath to a wire rack, removing and discarding the foil. Leave to cool completely in the tin, for about 4 hours.
For the frosting, melt the chocolate in a heatproof bowl set over a pan of barely simmering water. In a food processor, pulse the remaining ingredients until combined. Add 1/3 of the mixture into the melted chocolate and whisk together. Return everything to the food processor and blitz until the frosting is smooth and spreadable.
Once the cake has cooled, remove from tin and place on a serving platter. Loosely spread the frosting over the top before serving.