To make the cakes
- 270g Butter, spreadable butter or margarine
- 250g Caster sugar
- 225ml of Whole Milk
- 2tbsp Black treacle
- 4 Large Eggs
- 270g Self raising flour
- 2tsp Vanilla extract
- 65g Cocoa powder
- 110g Dark plain chocolate
To make the buttercream
- 130g Dark plain chocolate
- 250g Salted butter at room temperature
- 1tsp Vanilla extract
- 20g Cocoa powder
- 397g Tin of condensed milk
Oven baking temperature – 170 degrees Celsius (fan assisted)
To make the cakes:
- To begin – break the chocolate into a small bowl set over a pan of recently boiled water off the heat and leave to melt gently. Once melted take off the heat and set aside.
- In a separate bowl add the cocoa powder and vanilla extract then add the measured milk stirring in little by little until you have a smooth thin chocolate paste – set aside.
- In a large mixing bowl – cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy then add the black treacle and whisk well to combine.
- Add the eggs one at a time whisking well between each addition to avoid a curdle.
- Sift the flour and add to the batter then fold in slowly and thoroughly by hand with a metal spoon, not the whisk.
- Once you have a smooth yet thick batter add the cocoa/milk paste and stir well to make sure there are no flecks of light coloured batter remaining then finally add the melted and cooled chocolate.
- Divide between the three tins using weighing scales to ensure even sized finished sponge layers.
- Transfer to the oven preheated to 170 degrees Celsius (fan assisted) and bake for 25 to 30 minutes until the cakes are evenly risen and firm to the touch.
- When cool enough to handle take out of the tins, remove the base paper and leave to cool completely.
To make the buttercream:
- Break the chocolate into a heatproof bowl and stand over a pan of recently boiled water and leave to melt gently or use the microwave in 10 second bursts, stirring well in between. Once melted then set aside off the heat.
- In a roomy mixing bowl place the soft butter, cocoa powder and vanilla extract and with the whisk on its lowest speed blend them together so that you have a very thick dark coloured creamed mix. Once the cocoa powder has blended in then increase the whisk speed and whisk until fluffy.
- Have the can of condensed milk to hand and add 2 tbsp. at a time and whisk well between each addition until the full can has been added. Whisk until the cream is looking light, smooth and silky.
- Whisk in then the cool melted chocolate and the buttercream is ready to use.
- When ready to assemble the cakes – if the sponges have domed slightly then slice off the tops with a serrated knife before stacking and filling each layer with buttercream.
- Add then a crumb coat of cream, smooth off and chill in the fridge for at least an hour so that the cake and filling can firm up.
- Take from the fridge and use the rest of the cream to top coat, smooth and decorate.
Cook’s Tips: Allow the cake to fully cool prior to icing