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Your Fave Stout Chocolate Cake with Bailey Cream Cheese Icing

I made this tasty cake just before Christmas when I was feeling pretty Christmassy and before London moved into Tier 4 and our big family Christmas was cancelled. Very 2020. Obviously, a stout cake is not just for Christmas it would make a lovely celebration cake for a birthday cake, St Patrick’s Day, Valentine's day or just any Saturday. Pick any occasion and it works a treat!


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You can use any stout beer for the cake. The original Nigella recipe used Guinness but I wanted to use our own homebrewed beer. We brew beer at home in our London flat and have made quite a few now. Check out all our homebrews here!


For this recipe, I used our milk stout which is a sweet balanced stout with strong chocolate flavours. Details on how we brewed this stout can be found here. It worked really well in the cake and I loved the fact that I baked a cake using our own beer. Major bonus points!


I then topped the cake with the addition of Baileys Irish Cream liqueur in the icing sugar for a lovely alcoholic hit. I named this recipe "Your Fave stout chocolate cake" after our homebrewery "Fave" which gets its name from the combination of our names, Faith (me) and Dave. To learn more about our brewing journey check out the about me page.


Also check out some of my other cake recipes, including my vanilla & cardamom cake, raspberry & almond crumb cake and lemon victoria sponge recipe.





TIPS FOR THE PERFECT STOUT CHOCOLATE CAKE!


No need for room temperature ingredients: Unlike other cakes, there is no need to bring all the ingredients up to room temperature, as the first step is to melt the butter. Therefore, this cake has a quick start with not too much thought. However, it never hurts to bring the egg and sour cream up to room temperature, but I feel like it does not cause major problems if you don’t.


Sieving is your friend: Remember to sieve your flour, cocoa powder and bicarbonate soda together to get them well mixed and to avoid any clumps in the cake. Also, remember to sieve the icing sugar used in the bailey's cream cheese icing.


Cool the cake in the pan: This cake is quite damp so let it cool completely in the pan before moving.


Cool the cake completely before icing: Warm cakes melt icing so to avoid this make sure the cake has fully cooled to room temperature before icing. If you are in a rush you could go Great British Bake Off style and pop in it the fridge but I normally cool it overnight at room temperature.


Store the cake in the fridge: As this cake is topped with a cream cheese frosting it needs to be stored in the fridge at all times. To avoid this, store the un-iced cake in an airtight container at room temperature and top with the icing just before serving.


Tastes best the next day: I truly believe this cake tastes so much better the next day as the flavours really start to settle down. So in my opinion, bake it the day before and ice it on the day you need it for the best results.





HOW TO MAKE THE STOUT CHOCOLATE CAKE?


Preheat your oven to 180 °C/160 °C Fan/ Gas mark 4 and prepare a 9 inch (23 cm) springform baking tin by greasing with butter and lining with a cut-out circle of baking paper.


Start by adding the stout beer and butter to a saucepan and heat slowly on low heat until the butter has melted completely.


Turn off the heat and add the sieved cocoa powder and caster sugar. Stir until well combined.


In a separate bowl beat together the egg and sour cream then add it to the beery sugar mix. Make sure that the beery mix is not too warm as we don't want any cooked eggs.


Mix in your sieved flour and bicarbonate soda and whisk until the dry ingredients are fully incorporated.


Transfer the batter to your prepared baking tin and pop it in the oven. This batter is quite thin and if your cake tin is not leakproof, get it in the oven as quickly as possible to avoid too much spillage. Mine is not leakproof so I move fast here!


Bake for 45 mins - 1 hour. I baked mine for 55 mins but I think 50 mins would have been the sweet spot. You can confirm the cake is done, by poking a skewer in the middle and confirming that it comes out clean.


Leave the cake to cool completely in the tin before icing. As this cake is quite damp this is pretty important. I normally make it in the evening and leave it overnight to cool.


When the cake has cooled beat the cold cream cheese until it has a spreadable texture. Sieve the icing sugar and mix with the cream cheese, then add the Bailey’s. The icing should be quite thin at this point. Adding the double cream will thicken it up. This icing is so lush I will not judge you for licking the bowl clean. I know I did.


Ice the cake so that it looks like the top of a creamy stout. So simple! Now take a moment to admire your work before cutting in and eating this lovely dessert!



Verdict:

I absolutely love this cake. I think I have baked this around 4 or 5 times but this is my first time pairing it with Bailey's cream cheese frosting and it really was a game-changer. This was also the first time I have baked with one of our homemade beer and our classic milk stout honestly worked a treat here. This will not be my first experimentation with this beer!




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Your Fave Stout Chocolate Cake with Bailey Cream Cheese Icing Recipe

Serves 12

Prep time: 20 mins, Baking time: 50 mins

Total time: 4 hours (including cooling time)

Recipe adapted from Nigella.


Ingredients

For the cake

  • 250 ml Stout beer (such as our classic milk stout)

  • 250 g Unsalted butter

  • 75 g Cocoa butter

  • 400 g Caster sugar

  • 150 ml Sour cream

  • 2 Eggs (Large)

  • 1 tbsp Vanilla extract

  • 275 g Plain flour

  • 2.5 tsp Bicarbonate of soda


For the icing

  • 300 g Cream cheese (Philadelphia)

  • 150 g Icing sugar

  • 2 tsp Cornflour

  • 2 tbsp Baileys Irish Cream Liqueur

  • 125 ml double cream (or whipping cream)


Method

For the cake

  1. Preheat your oven to 180 °C/160 °C Fan/ Gas mark 4 and prepare a 9 inch (23 cm) springform baking tin by greasing with butter and lining with a cut-out circle of baking paper.

  2. Heat the stout beer and butter in a saucepan on low heat until the butter has melted completely.

  3. Turn off the heat and add the sieved cocoa powder and caster sugar. Stir until well combined.

  4. In a separate bowl beat together the egg and sour cream.

  5. Add the sour cream mixture to the beery sugar mix. Make sure that the beat mix is not too warm as we don't want any cooked eggs.

  6. Mix in your sieved flour and bicarbonate of soda and whisk until the dry ingredients are fully incorporated.

  7. Transfer the batter to your prepared baking tin and pop it in the preheated oven.

  8. Bake for 45 mins - 1 hour. I baked mine for 55 mins but I think 50 mins would have been the sweet spot. You check the cake is done by poking a skewer in the middle. If the cake is done the skewer should come out clean.

  9. Leave the cake to cool completely in the tin before icing.


For the icing

  1. Only proceed to ice the cake once it has cooled down to room temperature

  2. Make the icing by beating the cold cream cheese until it has a spreadable texture.

  3. Sieve the icing sugar and mix it with the cream cheese.

  4. Add the Bailey’s and mix in. Expect the icing to be thin at this point.

  5. Add the double cream and whisk it into the icing. This should thicken up the cream cheese.

  6. Ice the top of the cake with Bailey's cream cheese icing spread it so that it looks like the top of a lovely creamy stout.



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