Recipe For Chocolate Fennel Cake

I issued a challenge where you had to use a savoury ingredient in a sweet dish. I have had this recipe for a chocolate fennel cake from the Food and Home Entertaining August 2008 magazine waiting for testing and this was the perfect opportunity. I have decided that gluten free cakes cannot be sugar free as they end up slightly too dense but I am well pleased with the candied fennel. As an aside, I attempted to make the icing with Sugalite, a sugar substitute but it did not work. So, I have made a normal icing, which rendered the fact I had used Willies Cacao and fructose a slight waste of ingredients as the cake needs the icing and I cannot enjoy it.

"Chocolate Fennel Cake"
Chocolate Fennel Cake
Chocolate Fennel Cake
Adapted from Food and Home Entertaining August 2008
for the cake:
  • 1 small fennel bulb, thinly sliced
  • 600g good quality dark chocolate, broken into pieces
  • 300g unsalted butter
  • 12 large eggs, separated
  • 100g caster sugar - I used fructose
for the candied fennel:
  • 2 small fennel bulbs, sliced
  • 200g caster sugar – I used fructose
  • 200mls water
for the icing:
  • 250g unsalted butter
  • 500g icing sugar
  • 1 teaspoon finely ground fennel seeds
for the cake:
  1. preheat the oven to 180° Celsius
  2. line the base and the sides of 2 x 20cm springform tins with baking paper
  3. place the fennel slices on the bases
  4. place the chocolate and the butter in a bowl
  5. place the bowl over a pan of gently simmering water – do not allow the water to touch the bowl
  6. allow to melt thoroughly
  7. whisk the egg yolks with 30mls of the sugar for 30 seconds
  8. stir in the melted chocolate and mix well
  9. beat the egg whites with the remaining sugar until very stiff
  10. fold one third of the egg whites into the chocolate mix
  11. gently fold in the remainder of the egg whites
  12. pour the mixture into the tins
  13. bake for 20 – 25 minutes
  14. remove from the oven and allow to cool
  15. turn onto a wire rack once cooled and place them in the fridge
for the candied fennel:
  1. place the ingredients into a sauce pan
  2. bring to the boil
  3. lower the heat and simmer for 30 minutes
  4. allow to cool
for the icing:
  1. beat the ingredients together until light a fluffy
to assemble:
  1. use a hot knife to slice each cake in half
  2. place a cake layer on your cake plate
  3. use a third of the icing and top with some candied fennel
  4. repeat until all the layers are stacked
My Notes
as you will see, I did not slice the cake in half as I used a larger springform tin and only baked half the measurements

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11 thoughts on “Recipe For Chocolate Fennel Cake

  1. Pingback: Cream of Cauliflower & Fennel Soup | Things My Belly Likes
  2. This sounds interesting…I love fennel but have never used it in a cake! In bread and foccacia yes..always delicious, so my guess mixed with chocolate would be slightly different. I’ve used candied fennel also on a capaccio of thinly sliced salmon and rose pepper. Delicious! Love this twist to your chocolate cake though! x

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    1. thanks for the suggestion Yvette on how I can use the rest of the candied fennel xxx

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  3. Wonder if I could be tempted to taste this – fennel is not my favourite.
    🙂 Mandy

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    1. If you don’t like fennel I would not try it 🙂

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  4. Is the fennel taste strong? Don’t think my crowd will go for this, does it taste of liquorice?

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    1. I did not use too much fennel on the base and Dave said it was not that strong. The candied fennel is awesome though 🙂

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