Black cherry loaf cake

Preparation time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: 45 minutes

For the cake:
250g self-raising flour
100g ground almonds
240g butter
240g sugar
4 eggs
2 tablespoons hot water
2 dessert spoons (4oz) black cherry jam
10-15 black cherries – halved and stoned

For the chocolate ganache icing:
150g dark chocolate – I used Green & Blacks Organic
300ml double cream
Extra chocolate for melting and decorating

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September 2014

September is my birthday month – the 24th to be precise, just in case you’re planning on showering me with gifts – but I think I’ve got to the age when a birthday cake doesn’t always feature in the day’s events.

You know how it is; once, like me, you’re out of your teens (ahem) you just want a nice relaxing evening with friends – maybe dinner out with the gang, followed by a little tipple or two. But there’s rarely cake anymore.

A friend of mine told me the other day that she had made an ice cream sandwich for her husband’s birthday cake because that’s what he loved most in the world (I know, easy to please right?). This got me thinking about what cake I would make for myself if I could have any kind of cake.

You might think this very naughty looking cherry chocolate loaf cake is particularly decadent. It is in fact a breeze to make and really quite simple in taste – a little bit like me.

For the cake batter, I simply threw everything into a bowl and whisked it up with my handheld blender-whisk thingy, then poured it into a large loaf tin that I had greased and lined with parchment.

Bake for 45 minutes on 170c but watch it after 40 minutes as it will turn golden quickly. Set aside to cool.

To make the ganache, break the chocolate up into a large bowl. Heat the cream in a large pan until nearly boiling and then pour it over the chocolate and gently stir until the chocolate has completely melted and mixed together. Then whisk frantically until the cream begins to thicken (it will never clot as there’s too much chocolate in it) at which point you should pop it in the fridge for about 30 minutes, until it reaches a thickened state.

To decorate the cake simply go wild. I poured on the ganache and then some melted chocolate and cherry halves, as well as a few shards of chocolate.

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