I made this wonderful recipe for Christmas last year, but there is nothing stopping you making it any time of the year! It is decadent and creamy, yet contains no dairy and not too much sugar.
It would make a wonderful addition to a dinner party table, or to any family meal.
I used the classic Mary Berry recipe for the cake, but filled it with a decadent chocolate chestnut filling so that it would be gluten and dairy-free.
I will be making it again this year. If you make it too do let me know. I’m sure you won’t be disappointed!
Top tip! If you couldn’t be bothered to make the cake, the chocolate chestnut filling makes a wonderful indulgent ‘chocolate pot’ on its own! Put small portions into ramekins or little pots and serve chilled.
- For the cake:
- 175g good quality 70% dark chocolate (make sure it's gluten and dairy free)
- 6 free-range medium eggs, separated
- 175g sugar
- 2 tbsp cocoa powder
- For the filling:
- 1 packet vacuum packed chestnuts (I used Merchant Gourmet)
- 175ml dairy-free milk
- 50g dark chocolate (check it's gluten and dairy free)
- 1-2 tsp icing sugar (to taste)
- Few drops of almond extract (optional)
- For the ganache topping:
- 200g tinned coconut milk (the thick part - see note below recipe)
- 150g dark chocolate
- Prepare a shallow baking tin measuring 33cm x 23cm by greasing it and then lining with greaseproof paper
- Make the cake by firstly melting the dark chocolate, either in a bowl over a saucepan of boiling water or in the microwave, checking and stirring every 30 seconds
- Whisk the egg whites in a large bowl until stiff and forming 'peaks'
- Place the egg yolks in a separate bowl with the sugar and whisk for around 3 minutes until pale and creamy
- Pour the cooled melted chocolate and cocoa powder into the egg yolk and sugar mix and gently stir together until combined
- Finally fold a couple of spoonfuls of egg white into the mixture until all the egg white is combined into the mixture. Don't over mix of you'll loose the air you need to create a light sponge
- Pour the cake mixture into the prepared tin and bake in a pre-heated oven at 180 degrees/160 degree fan/gas mark 4 for 20 - 25 minutes until risen and firm to touch
- While the cake is baking make the filling
- Melt the chocolate as before
- Place the chestnuts, milk, icing sugar and melted chocolate into a small food processor or blender and combine until smooth
- Set aside until the cake is cold
- Once cold, place a piece of greaseproof paper onto a work surface and sprinkle with icing sugar
- Turn the roulade out onto the baking paper and peel off the paper from the cake
- Spread with your chocolate filling leaving a 2cm border all around, then with the short edge facing you, make a shallow cut in the cake along the width approx. 2cm from the edge
- Start rolling the cake at this cut; it should make it easier
- Use the iced greaseproof paper to help roll the cake tightly placing the join underneath the cake
- Make the ganache by gently heating the coconut milk. Once steaming, add the dark chocolate and stir until you have a thick sauce
- Place your filled sponge on a serving board or plate. If you want to make it look like a log cut a small piece off the end diagonally then join that to the side of the roll. It doesn't need to be neat because you will hide the join with your chocolate ganache
- Cover the roulade with your chocolate ganache. I piped mine to get the effect of bark, but you can just spread it on if you prefer
- Decorate any way you like and add a sprinkling of icing sugar for the finishing touch
To get the thickest part of the coconut milk, place the tin in the fridge over night. Pour off the coconut water and use in a smoothie or other recipe and use the thick part for this recipe.
If you can tolerate dairy then use double cream for the ganache and cows milk in the chocolate chestnut filling.
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