I’m a little bit embarrassed to be posting this one. I know that the proof of the pudding is in the eating, but not only is this an appalling photo with which to demonstrate one’s labours, but the cake didn’t look that good in the first place! So, something of a double-disaster here:
The cake in question is Dan Lepard’s brown sugar chocolate cake. Dan used to have a very useful step-by-step photographed guide to making this cake on his message boards, but it’s disappeared while he restructures his forums; hopefully it’ll come back in time.
On his forums a number of people said they had problems with the cake peaking, then sinking or collapsing in the middle after baking. He suggested replacing the self-raising flour with plain flour, and keeping the other raising agents the same. I followed this advice, but it still rose and sank after baking, so in the photo above the cake is inverted, which goes some way to hiding the somewhat saggy and wrinkled top.
I used a mix of molasses sugar and soft light brown muscovado sugar, which might account for why my cake came out so dark, and not reddish-brown as the recipe suggests.
Rubbish photo, lighting and sinking aside, this cake is delicious. It’s light, moist and really chocolatey. It’s a shame that it isn’t more attractive for displaying, but once it’s drenched in the left over condensed milk and served up as a pudding, no-one is any the wiser. It would probably work really well as individual cup cakes as they wouldn’t have to support the same weight of cake, but I’d urge you to give this one a try regardless.