• A Winter Treat

    Food & Wine |
  • When temperatures drop and winter settles in, it’s a great time to gather the family at home and share a special meal together. However, spare time is more often than not a rare luxury, something that Donna Hay recognises. Quick and easy to prepare for a weeknight - or easily jazzed up for a weekend family gathering - try Donna's sumptuous chocolate pound cake for a treat this winter.


    1 cup (100g) cocoa powder, sifted
    2/3 cup (180ml) boiling water
    250g unsalted butter, softened
    1 cup (220g) caster sugar
    2/3 cup (120g) brown sugar
    2 teaspoons vanilla extract
    5 eggs
    1 cup (150g) plain flour


    100g dark chocolate
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    1/4 cup (60ml) single (pouring) cream

    Preheat oven to 160°C. Place the cocoa and boiling water in a bowl and mix until smooth. Set aside.

    Place the butter and both the sugars in the bowl of an electric mixer and beat on high speed for 6 minutes or until light and creamy. Add the vanilla, eggs and cocoa mixture and beat until well combined.  Add the flour and mix until just combined. Pour the mixture into a lightly greased 21cm x 10cm loaf tin lined with non-stick baking paper. Bake for 1 hour 10 minutes or until cooked when tested with a skewer. Cool in the tin for 5 minutes before turning out on to a wire rack to cool completely. 

    To make the chocolate glaze, place the chocolate, vanilla and cream in a small saucepan over low heat and stir until smooth. Cool slightly before spreading over the cooled cake to serve.


    Special Occasion Layer Cake

    To make a layer cake, slice the cake into 3 even layers. Whisk together 300ml double (thick) cream with 1 tablespoon sifted icing sugar and ½ teaspoon vanilla bean paste. Spread the cream between the layers and spoon over the chocolate glaze to serve.



    After Dinner Mini Desserts

    To make little cakes, bake the mixture in 12 x ½-cup-capacity (125ml) greased muffin tins for 25–28 minutes or until cooked when tested with a skewer. Cool and spoon over the chocolate glaze to serve. Makes 12.  


    Recipe courtesy of Donna Hay, from her book The New Easy.