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This article was taken from our July 2017 Issue Buy this issue now

Gluten-Free Decadent Chocolate Cake

In our July 2017 issue we featured this gorgeously indulgent cake recipe from Kirsten Tibballs, in her book ‘Chocolate’. Below you can find the recipe, and you should definitely give it a go for yourself!

Serves: 12–14


  • 260 g (91/4 oz) almond meal
  • 115 g (4 oz) icing (confectioners’) sugar
  • 120 g (41/4 oz) caster (superfine) sugar
  • 120 g (41/4 oz/about 2) whole eggs
  • 320 g (111/4 oz/about 16) egg yolks
  • 100 ml (31/2 fl oz) vegetable oil
  • pinch of salt
  • 80 g (23/4 oz/3/4 cup) Dutch-process cocoa powder, sifted
  • pinch of baking powder, sifted
  • 140 g (5 oz) unsalted butter
  • 180 g (61/2 oz) good-quality dark chocolate, coarsely chopped
  • 110 g (33/4 oz) good-quality dark chocolate, coarsely chopped
  • 80 ml (21/2 fl oz/1⁄3 cup) cream (35% fat)
  • 10 ml (1/4 fl oz/2 teaspoons orange liqueur (optional)
  • small block of milk chocolate
  • lavender flowers



Preheat the oven to 160°C (315°F). Prepare a 22 cm (81/2 inch) cake ring or tin (see page 16). Put the almond meal and both sugars in the bowl of an electric mixer with a paddle attachment and beat well on low speed to combine. Gradually add the whole eggs and egg yolks, mixing well after each addition. Slowly add the vegetable oil in a constant drizzle, followed by the salt, regularly scraping down the side of the bowl. Using a spatula, gently fold in the sifted cocoa powder and baking powder until just combined.

Melt the butter and chocolate together in a double boiler or in a bowl in the microwave (see page 12). Add the butter and chocolate mixture to the cake batter and mix together by hand until well combined. Pour the mixture into the prepared cake tin and hollow out the centre slightly (about 1 cm/1/2 inch deep) with a spoon. Bake for 50–55 minutes. To test if it is ready, insert a metal skewer or small knife in the centre of the cake – it should come out a little bit sticky just in the centre.


To make the chocolate ganache topping, put the chocolate in a bowl. Put the cream in a saucepan over medium heat and bring to the boil. Pour the hot cream over the chocolate, whisking by hand until combined and the chocolate has melted. Add the orange liqueur and continue whisking until combined.


To prepare the garnish, using a large knife or vegetable peeler, scrape chocolate shavings from the chocolate block and set aside. Pick the very centre of the lavender flower for decorating.


To assemble the cake, unmould the chocolate cake once cool and remove the baking paper. Spread the chocolate ganache on top with a palette knife. Place the individual chocolate shavings around the edge of the top of the cake and place the lavender flowers on top of the shavings. This cake is best stored covered in plastic wrap at room temperature for up to 5 days.