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Chocolate Guinness Cake and Sweet Potato Shepherdless Pie


March 17, 2017

Chocolate Guinness Cake
For the cake:
1.3 cups butter plus extra for greasing
5 fl oz Guinness
2 cups plain flour
2 tsp baking soda
1 cup cocoa powder
1.6 cups of superfine sugar
3 large free-range eggs
1 tbsp vanilla extract
5 fl oz sour cream

For the frosting:
1 1/4 cup good-quality white chocolate
1/2 cup butter, at room temperature
8 oz cream cheese
1 3/4 cup icing sugar, sifted

1. Preheat the oven to 350°F, grease a 9 inch cake tin with a removable base and line with a disc of parchment paper. 2. Melt the butter in a saucepan and then whisk in the cocoa powder and Guinness. Remove from the heat and set aside.
3. In a large mixing bowl combine the flour, baking soda and sugar. Make a well with the back of a spoon and pour in the melted butter mixture along with the eggs, sour cream and vanilla extract.
4. Pour into the prepared cake tin and place in the oven for 1 hour or until a skewer inserted comes out completely clean. When the cake is baking, make the cream cheese frosting.
5. To make the frosting, melt the chocolate in a bowl placed on top of a saucepan filled with a little water boiling over a low heat.
6. Remove from the heat to cool for about 10 minutes. Place the butter and cream cheese in a bowl and beat until fluffy and combined.
7. Mix through the melted white chocolate and then gradually sift and beat in the icing sugar until you have a smooth, spreadable mixture.
8. To assemble the cake, place it on a cake stand and spread with frosting.

Serves 10.

Sweet Potato Shepherdless Pie
1 tbsp coconut oil
1 large onion, finely diced
1 large carrot, finely diced
1 celery stalk, finely diced
1 garlic clove, very finely chopped
3 thyme sprigs, leaves only
1¼ lbs mushrooms, roughly chopped
5 tbsps red wine
2 cups vegetable stock
1½ cups quinoa, uncooked
2 14-oz cans green lentils, drained and rinsed
6 cups spinach
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
For the topping
2 large sweet potatoes, peeled and diced
1 tbsp coconut oil
2 red onions, finely sliced

1. Melt the coconut oil in a large pan over medium-high heat. Add the onion, carrot, celery, garlic, and thyme and cook for 4–5 minutes, or until softened. Add the mushrooms and cook for 2–3 more minutes. Season with salt and pepper.
2. Pour in the wine, vegetable stock, quinoa, and lentils and simmer for 15 minutes until reduced. Stir in the spinach until just wilted. Taste and adjust the seasoning.
3. Meanwhile, prepare the topping. Steam the sweet potatoes until they are tender and can be pierced easily with a fork.
4. Melt half the coconut oil in a frying pan over medium-high heat and add the red onions. Turn the heat down low, season with salt and pepper, and cook gently, stirring occasionally until softened and caramelized, about 8 –10 minutes. Set aside. Preheat the oven to 400°F (350°F fan).
5. Place the sweet potatoes in a bowl with the remaining coconut oil and mash until smooth. Season to taste and then stir in the caramelized red onions.
6. Transfer the lentil mixture to an ovenproof baking dish. Add the sweet potato mash over the top in dollops and spread out evenly across the pie. Place in the oven and cook for 25 minutes until lightly golden. Serve warm from the oven with a green salad.

Serves 4.

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