Ratatouille. Julie and Julia. Watching food shows on television. And a close friend. These are my inspirations for entering the wonderful world of baking.
The feel of melted chocolate, the anxious wait when something is being baked in the oven, the oh-so-lovely aroma of a baked cake ready to be decorated with an oh-so-seductive frosting… All this just inspires me to create a mess in my kitchen, which you will probably witness in my photography.
So what better way could there be to begin my adventurous culinary journey with a simple chocolate cake?
I have baked chocolate cakes before, but only in the microwave. And then there was once in the convection when the batter got semi-burnt in 5 minutes flat! My oven has a tendency to heat quickly, so I’m thinking probably it gets as excited to bake as its owner.
This time, I was extremely cautious. For two and a half hours, I was engrossed in the preparation of this cake. Testimony to this is the fact that I put in the batter in the oven only for 5 minutes to bake at first. Ha! Well, it eventually baked in 26 minutes. One word of advice: let the cake cool down, and then form judgements about it.
25g (3½ tbsp) cocoa powder
1 1/3 tsp baking powder
100g icing sugar
65g unsalted butter, melted
2/3 tsp vanilla essence
55g (1/3 cup) water
Preheat oven in convection mode at 130°C (266°F). Grease and line a 8″ round cake tin with butter/parchment paper.
Place a sieve in a mixing bowl and add flour, cocoa powder, baking powder and icing sugar. Mix well. While sieving, I was making my own pretty mountain as you can see.
Break the egg into a bowl and keep it aside.
Now add butter, vanilla essence, and egg and combine. Add water and mix for few seconds.
Ensure that the mixture does not form lumps. Add more water until the cake batter is smooth and shiny!
Now transfer this cake mixture into the prepared cake tin. Bake for 25–30 minutes.
Now you sit and pray that all goes well!
Take the cake out of the oven. To check for doneness, insert a toothpick into the centre. If it comes out clear or with a few crumbs, it means your cake is baked.
Now do a celebratory dance, sing loudly, inform several people about your achievement, and place the precious cake on a wire rack. And do let it cool to room temperature before serving.