Chocolate hazelnut cake

Hazelnut chocolate cake

Hazelnut chocolate cake


I am forced to cook new things for this column, but left to my own devices I am sure I would occasionally find myself stuck in a bit of a rut.

The chocolate cake tastes a bit like a Nutella cake. It was nice and easy and the hazelnuts are very pleasing. I could say good things about hazelnuts, but it would be a bit disingenuous as they are in a cake with sugar and butter. So make a cake, enjoy a slice.


200g skinned hazelnuts

250g butter

200g dark chocolate

4 eggs, separated

225g caster sugar

1 tsp vanilla essence

60g plain flour

Grease a 24-25cm-springform tin and line the base with parchment. Preheat oven to 150 degrees/gas 2. Process the nuts until they are coarsely ground. Melt the butter and chocolate – which you should break into pieces – in a bowl set over boiling water. Separate the eggs. Beat the egg whites until stiff. Beat the egg yolks with the caster sugar until pale and thick, then add the vanilla and the melted butter and chocolate. Fold in the flour, then the egg whites. Pour into the prepared tin and bake for 50 minutes, possibly an hour. A skewer inserted in the cake should come out clean. This cake is nicer when it has cooled down. Serve with some sweetened cream.


Ragusano cheese: This is a Sicilian cheese that tastes great in Caesar salads. It’s a bit wet to grate, so make sure it’s really cold before you try to grate it. It’s strong and salty though, so perfect in a Caesar.