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Chocolate and honeycomb torte recipe

This striking cake, crowned with honeycomb and glossy ganache, is the perfect centrepiece for any celebration

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  • Serves 12-16

  • Prep time 40 mins

  • Cooking time 40 mins

  • Total time 1 hr 20 mins

  • Freeze yes
  • Prepare ahead yes

Ingredients

for the chocolate torte
  • 250g (9oz) unsalted butter, cut into chunks
  • 250g (9oz) dark chocolate, chopped
  • 4 large free-range eggs
  • 125g (4½oz) caster sugar
  • 85g (3½oz) self-raising flour, sifted
  • 75g (3oz) ground almonds
for the honeycomb
  • 225g (8oz) granulated sugar
  • 2tbsp white wine vinegar
  • 1½tbsp clear honey
  • ½tbsp liquid glucose
  • 1tbsp bicarbonate of soda
for the ganache icing
  • 200g (7oz) dark chocolate, chopped
  • 397g can condensed milk
you will need
  • 2 x 20cm (8in) round cake tins, oiled and bases lined with baking parchment
  • a very deep and wide pan
  • a sugar thermometer
  • an oiled, shallow roasting tin

Preparation

  1. Heat the oven to 180 C, 160 C fan, 350 F, gas 4. Melt the butter and chocolate together in a bowl over a pan of hot but not simmering water. When smooth and well combined, set aside to cool.

  2. Beat the eggs and sugar until thick and pale, then add the cooled chocolate mix. Fold in the flour and almonds, then pour into the cake tins and bake for 40 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean. Cool completely before removing from the tins.

  3. To make the honeycomb, add the sugar, vinegar, honey and glucose to the large pan and gently heat until they are all dissolved. Turn up the heat, add the sugar thermometer to the pan and simmer vigorously until the temperature reaches 140 C/275 F. Just before this, mix the bicarbonate of soda with 2tbsp water. Once the temperature is correct, add the bicarbonate mix and stir rapidly. The mixture will triple in volume, which is why you need to do this in a large pan. Tip it into the oiled roasting tin, being careful not to press the mixture down and lose its volume. Leave to cool completely before bashing out on to a surface and crumbling.

  4. To make the ganache, put the chocolate and condensed milk in a bowl and microwave on Low/Medium for 1 to 2 minutes, stirring. Immediately spread the icing on each cake layer, crumble both with honeycomb and sandwich together. This needs to be done quickly, as the icing will firm up in about 4 to 5 minutes.