Japanese matcha powder is a wonder to mix into frostings, ice cream or cream for its Shrek-like colour and astringent taste. Here it pairs beautifully with chocolate for a showstopper dessert. I’ve cooked many chocolate cakes in my lifetime, but this one is the ultimate. My sister-in-law Amy divulged her family recipe to me and the cake has a springy moist texture and a pure cocoa flavour, but is not too rich.
Devil’s Food Cake with Matcha Dressing
Serves: 8 people
Preparation: 45 minutes, plus 1 hour chilling
Cooking time: 40 minutes
250 ml (9 fl oz) boiling water
75 g (21/2 oz) cocoa powder
350 g (12 oz) plain flour
350 g (12 oz) caster sugar
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda (baking soda)
1 tsp salt
250 ml (9 fl oz) milk
125 ml (4 fl oz) vegetable oil 2 tsp vanilla extract
325 g (111/2 oz) salted butter, at room temperature
650 g (1 lb 7 oz) icing (confectioners’) sugar
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 tbsp matcha powder
3 tbsp milk
- Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F) or 160°C (315°F) fan-forced. Grease and line two 20 cm (8 inch) or three 18 cm (7 inch) round springform cake tins.
- Pour the boiling water into a measuring jug and add the cocoa. Whisk the mixture smooth and let cool while you measure out all the remaining ingredients.
- Pour the remaining dry ingredients into the bowl of a standing electric mixer or use a large bowl and electric hand mixer.
- In another bowl, whisk the eggs, milk, oil and vanilla extract.
- When the cocoa mixture has cooled enough, whisk into the egg and milk mixture.
- On a slow speed, add the liquid until combined. Beat for 1 minute on slow speed. Pour the mixture into the tins. It will seem very liquid, but will bake up very light.
- Bake for 35–40 minutes on the centre rack of the oven. Cool in the tins and then remove.
- To make the matcha frosting, in the bowl of the standing mixer, whisk the butter on slow speed for 6–7 minutes until pale and fluffy. It’s imperative that your butter is at room temperature to get a smooth, silky texture. Add the sifted icing sugar, 2 tablespoons at a time, keeping the speed slow. When finished, add the vanilla, sifted matcha and milk and keep beating until the mixture is very smooth. If it’s too thick, add another tablespoon of milk.
- Place one cake on a serving platter. Spread a thick layer of frosting to sandwich the two or three cakes. Ice the sides first and then the top. If you want to get a perfect finish, try ‘crumbing’ the cake by first spreading a thin layer of frosting around the outside and top of the cake until everything is smoothed at the same level. Place in the fridge for 1 hour and the cake will set. Remove and then ice the cake with more frosting.
About Jennifer Joyce
Jennifer Joyce is a successful food writer, author and stylist based in London. She is American-born but has been resident in the UK for more than 24 years. Working for leading UK magazines and newspapers, such as BBC Good Food, Waitrose Kitchen and Jamie Magazine as well as The Guardian and Daily Telegraph, she draws on her unique dual talents of creating mouth-watering recipes and styling the dishes for photography. Leiths School of Food and Wine in London hosts Jennifer’s popular cookery classes and she has appeared on numerous TV and radio shows in the UK and US, including the BBC’s Today and Good Food Show Live. My Asian Kitchen is Jennifer’s eleventh book. Her previous titles for Murdoch Books are My Street Food Kitchen, Meals in Heels and Skinny Meals in Heels.
Images and recipes from My Asian Kitchen by Jennifer Joyce, Murdoch Books, RRP $39.99 Photography by Phil Webb, Illustrations by Riley Joyce.