Nigella’s Easter Egg Nest Cake

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Serves 8-10

Ingredients

For The Cake
250g dark chocolate (chopped)
125g unsalted butter (softened)
6 medium eggs (2 whole, 4 separated)
175g caster sugar (75g / 1/3 cup for yolk mixture, 100g / 2/3 cup for whites)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

For The Topping
125g dark chocolate (chopped)
250ml double cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 packet chocolate mini eggs (for decorating)

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C.
  2. Line the bottom of a 23cm / 9in springform cake tin with baking parchment but do not grease the sides of the tin.
  3. Melt the 250g chocolate with the butter in either a double boiler or a microwave and then set aside to cool slightly.
  4. Whisk the 4 egg whites until firm, then gradually add the 100g / 2/3 cup of sugar and whisk until the whites are holding their shape and peak gleamingly – but not stiff.
  5. Remove this bowl (if you’re using a freestanding mixer, as I do, though a handheld job would do fine) and set aside while you whisk, in another bowl, the 2 whole eggs and 4 yolks with the 75g / 1/3 cup of sugar and the vanilla extract, and then gently fold in the chocolate mixture. Lighten the mixture with some egg whites – just dollop a large spoonful in, stir briskly and then fold in the rest of the whisked whites gently, in about three goes.
  6. Pour into the prepared tin and bake for 35-40 minutes or until the cake is risen and cracked and the centre is no longer wobbly on the surface. Cool the cake in its tin on a wire rack. The middle will sink as it cools and the sides will splinter. You want this to look like a cake with a crater in it, so do not panic at the vision of imperfection in front of you. That’s one of the reasons this cake is so unstressful to make.
  7. To finish the cake, carefully remove it from the tin and place it on a plate or cake-stand, don’t worry if bits fall off here and there. Put them back in a loose fashion.
  8. Melt the chocolate for the topping and leave it to cool a little. Whip the cream until it is firming up and aerated but still soft, then add the vanilla and fold in the melted chocolate. Fill the crater of the cake with the chocolatey cream, easing it out gently towards the edges of the cake with a rubber spatula, and then arrange the little sugar Easter eggs on top

Image and Recipe Credit: Nigella Lawson

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