Wednesday, 26 January 2011

Chocolate Sponge

This recipe used to be one of my favourites when the children were small. It's foolproof (at least, I've never known it fail!) and in my opinion, is better than a chocolate Victoria Sandwich cake if you want a light sponge.  The only reason I don't make it more often is that I prefer sturdier everyday cakes which last a bit longer - for some reason people always take larger slices from a sponge cake!

The basic recipe uses oil and milk instead of butter, and then a variable addition to give colour and/or improve flavour and texture. In some recipes it's a tablespoon of  black treacle or golden syrup, but here it's two tablespoons of caramelised condensed milk.

I didn't want to go over the top with a frosting, so halved the recipe and just filled the sponge layers. The chocolate and condensed milk made a lovely fudgy mixture - I'm sure it would have made a great frosting!

The frosting/filling can be varied to suit the occasion - black cherry jam and fresh cream would make a nice gateau for a special occasion, although the sponge is very light, so may not take a really heavy filling well. I don't think the caramel made much difference to the flavour of the cake, so if you want to try the sponge without opening a tin or jar of caramel, try it with the black treacle, or molasses, instead.

13 comments:

Choclette said...

This cake looks highly tempting. I'm with you generally on preferring a denser cake, but sometimes light is just what is needed.

Chele said...

Chocolate cake in any form is always top of my list and this one looks fantastic!

Dom at Belleau Kitchen said...

i think you've hit the nail on the head with this lighter cake... half for me... half for The Viking... job done x

Suelle said...

Dom - that sounds a good plan! ;-)

Chele - this recipe always produces a good rise - Victoria Sandwich sponges can be a bit 'hit and miss' when I make them!

Foodycat said...

I do love a fat wedge of sponge cake!

Les rêves d'une boulangère (Brittany) said...

I love the generously thick frosting sandwiched inside!

Joanna said...

Here I am Sue brooding about cakes once again... but a visit to the Carnation site has cheered me up. I am always impressed by the way you find recipes all over the net that work! I always end up with weird sites that expect you to have packets of pistachio pudding mix in your larder... I am not good at VS sponges so this looks like an easy one and impressively classical too, well risen and light looking :)

Suelle said...

Joanna - yes - some sites do brighten the day. LOL! As for recipes which work - you should see the pile of rejects whenever I'm looking for something new! Even then, I wouldn't say my choices were 100% successful.

Chocolate Here said...

Ohhh just picked up a jar of sour cherry jam - might be just the filling for this. My Mum is adidicted to light fluffy sponges ... this might be a way to convert her to chocolate cakes.

C said...

I'm not sure how I missed this one, but wow, that looks fantastic Sue! I love the way it's risen - really tall and impressive looking and that frosting really looks fab too. Definitely bookmarked to make soon, just as soon as I calculate which of my tins to use! (sigh, no 7" rounds here...)

Celia said...

What a gorgeous photo, Suelle! And seeing your magnificent sponge, and having just made a sponge for the lamingtons reminded me of this jam roll recipe that I made a while ago - it might fit your current baking requirements for CT? The sponge itself only uses SR flour, sugar, eggs and hot water..

http://figjamandlimecordial.com/2010/07/09/a-simple-jam-roll/

Suelle said...

Thanks for the suggestion, Celia. The only problem I have with fatless sponges is that they don't stay fresh for very long. I don't really want to bake every day.

Celia said...

Suelle, that is true, they don't stay fresh long at all. That's a shame...