A delicious chocolate-free chocolate cake from the doyenne of British baking.
Preparation time: 30-40 minutes
Cooking time: 25-30 minutes
200g/7oz butter, at room temperature, or baking spread (at least 70 per cent fat), plus extra for greasing
50g/2oz cocoa powder
4 tbsp full-fat or semi-skimmed milk
175g/6oz self-raising flour
1 tsp baking powder
1tsp ground ginger
250g/9oz caster sugar
2 pieces of stem ginger, finely chopped
For the filling and topping:
225g/8oz icing sugar
100g/4oz butter, at room temperature
2 tbsp stem or ginger syrup
1 tbsp full-fat or semi-skimmed milk
2 pieces of shredded stem ginger
1. Preheat the oven to 180C, 350F, Gas 4.
2. Grease 2 loose-bottomed round sandwich tins, 20cm/8in diameter and 4.5cm/1¾in deep. Line each base with baking parchment.
3. Put the cocoa powder into a large heatproof bowl. Stir in 6 tbsp of boiling water then add the milk. Mix to make a smooth paste.
4. Add the remaining cake ingredients and combine using an electric hand-whisk for 1-2 minutes (or 3 minutes with a wooden spoon). Do not over-mix or the cake may not rise.
5. Divide the cake mixture between the prepared tins and level the tops. Bake in the oven for 25-30 minutes or until the cake shrinks away from the sides of the tines and spring back when lightly pressed in the centre. Allow to cool for a few minutes, then turn out and peel off the paper. Turn the cakes the right way up and leave to cool on a wire rack.
6. Sift the icing sugar into a large bowl. Add the butter, stem ginger syrup and milk and beat together until well blended. Transfer 1 cake to a serving plate and cover with half the icing. Place the second cake on top and cover with the rest of the icing. Finally, decorate the edge with the shredded ginger.
In her inspiring book Mary Berry Cooks the Perfect (out in paperback with an exclusive tote bag on 3 November) the queen of baking shows you how to make everyday cooking extra special. Published by DK, priced £20; visit dk.com