I should COCOA!
Country Homes & Interiors|February 2022
SAY YES TO THE GLORIOUS, INDULGENT JOY OF A CHOCOLATE DESSERT. FROM MOUSSE TO PAVLOVA, CAKE TO SPICED COCOA, WE’VE RAISED THE BAR!
CHOCOLATE, LAVENDER AND LEMON BUNDT CAKE

SERVES 8-10

The combination of chocolate, lavender and lemon is an absolute winner in this cake. The lavender is subtle – it’s not like nibbling a bar of Grandma’s soap at all – and the lemon adds freshness to the whole shebang. The cake itself is light and moist, but one best eaten within a couple of days.

Flavourless vegetable oil, for oiling

¾tbsp culinary lavender buds

350g caster sugar

200g unsalted butter, softened

280g plain flour

50g dark chocolate (60–70% cocoa solids), grated

50g cocoa powder 1tsp baking powder

½tsp bicarbonate of soda

½tsp fine sea salt

3 large eggs

180g Greek yogurt

1–2tbsp milk, if needed

FOR THE GLAZE

200g icing sugar, sifted

40–50ml lemon juice

1½tbsp unsalted butter, melted

Pinch of fine sea salt

Lavender sprigs, to decorate

1 Preheat the oven to 170C/Gas mark 3. Generously brush the inside of a 2.4-litre bundt tin with oil, making sure to get into all the crevices.

2 Blitz the lavender and half the sugar to a powder in a food processor. Transfer to a mixing bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer, add the remaining sugar and the butter and beat until very pale and creamy – this will take at least 7 minutes.

3 Using a fork or balloon whisk, whisk the flour, grated chocolate, cocoa, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda and salt together in another bowl.

4 In a jug, whisk the eggs and yogurt together. Add this to the butter and sugar mixture, alternating with the flour mixture, beating well after each addition. Add a splash of milk to loosen if the batter is too stiff to fall off the end of a wooden spoon, but it shouldn’t be runny.

5 Spoon the batter into the prepared tin, smoothing with the back of a spoon to ensure that the batter fills all the crevices at the bottom of the tin. Tap the tin on the work surface a couple of times to remove all the air bubbles.

6 Bake for 40–45 minutes until a skewer inserted into the centre of the cake comes out clean. Leave to cool in the tin for 15 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack to cool.

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