Is it really possible that it’s September already? Though summer berries are now available throughout the year in the supermarkets thanks to importation, they are never as juicy and sweet as when they are homegrown, in season. I can make a lot of desserts with these berries, such as Cranachan. However, today I felt like making something related to chocolate.
In my world, not much can beat the combination of strawberries and chocolate, so I decided to extend this theme by creating Summer Berry Chocolate Cake – a berry-filled chocolate cake.
With this berry chocolate cake recipe, I used melted dark chocolate and dark chocolate cocoa powder in the cake batter to make it dark, rich, and not overly sweet. For this reason, as well, I used a mixture of caster sugar and dark muscovado sugar – so that there was a depth of flavor, making it a grown-up chocolate cake, rather than children’s-party cake.
Likewise, for the filling, rather than using sweetened whipped cream or buttercream, I used a mixture of creme fraiche and double cream, to cut through the darkness of the chocolate and the sweetness of the berries. This does mean, however, that the cake needs to be refrigerated if it does not all get eaten on the day it is made, otherwise the cream will spoil.
For the berry chocolate cake’s topping, I opted for chocolate ganache, again because it is more luxurious and less sickly than chocolate icing. Plus, you can whip up chocolate truffles with any leftover ganache!
I didn’t really plan a patriotic theme, but this cake does give a nod to the red, white, and blue of the US flag, with the strawberries, blueberries, and cream. It wasn’t intentional, but it seems this cake knows it’s Labor Day and wants to join in the celebrations! So, let’s check my easy chocolate berry cake recipe below, one of the best chocolate desserts I’ve made.
Summer Berry Chocolate Cake
For the Cake
- 200 g butter
- 100 g caster sugar
- 80 g dark muscovado sugar
- 225 g self-raising flour I used a gluten-free blend
- 50 g dark cocoa
- 50 g good-quality dark chocolate
- 3 eggs
- 1 tbsp milk
For the filling
- 100 ml creme fraiche
- 80 ml double cream
- 200 g strawberries
- 80 g blueberries
- 80 g blackcurrants
For the Topping
- 100 g good-quality dark chocolate
- 100 ml double cream
- A few berries to decorate.
- Preheat the oven to 180oC and line a 9-10 inch cake tin.
- Melt the dark chocolate over a bain-marie.
- To make the cake, cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
- Beat in the eggs one at a time, with a little flour to prevent the mixture from curdling.
- Sieve in the flour and cocoa and fold in, then add the melted chocolate and milk and stir lightly to combine everything.
- Pour into the prepared tin and bake for about 40 mins, or until a skewer inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Leave the cake to cool in the tin for 5 mins, then turn it out on a wire rack to cool completely.
- To make the filling, whisk together the creme fraiche and double cream until stiff.
- Cut the cake into halves and spread one half with the cream, then cover completely with the chopped strawberries, blueberries, and blackcurrants. Put the top half back on.
- To make the ganache, melt the rest of the dark chocolate over a bain marie, then stir in the rest of the double cream until warmed through. Stir well and remove from heat.
- Spread the ganache over the top of the cake, then decorate with the remaining fruit. Sprinkle the fruit with a little icing sugar.
- Serve the same day, or keep in the fridge for a couple of days.