Pistachio Almond Chocolate Cake


7 1/2 oz. all-purpose flour, sifted
1 1/2 oz. unsweetened cocoa, sifted
1 tsp. bicarbonate of soda
1 tsp. salt
2 oz. bittersweet chocolate, broken into pieces
12 oz. unsalted butter
8 oz. soft brown sugar
4 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla essence
1 tsp. white vinegar
8 fl. oz. boiling water
12 oz. unsalted roasted pistachios, shelled
6 oz. white chocolate chips
15 fl. oz. whipped cream, soft peaks
4 oz. roasted flaked almonds


Preheat oven to 325 F (160 C). Melt bittersweet chocolate in a bowl over boiling water. Using a food processor, beat 2 eggs. Add all-purpose flour, cocoa, bicarbonate of soda, salt, 4 oz. of butter, and salt. Mix well until smooth. Add vanilla essence, vinegar, and melted chocolate. Mix until smooth. Add boiling water and mix until smooth. Pour cake mixture into an 8-inch springform cake pan. Bake for 1 hour or until cake bounces back slightly when touched. Cool on a wire rack and wrap in foil and set aside. Keep 18 pistachios for later. Chop rest of pistachios and put in bowl with white chocolate chips. Put bowl over boiling water to melt chocolate. Remove and cool. Using a food processor, beat remaining butter and 2 egg whites until stiff, but not dry. Fold in white chocolate mixture. Slice cake horizontally into 4 slices. Sandwich layers together using white chocolate mixture, leaving enough mixture to cover top and sides of entire cake. Press cake lightly to ensure even coverage. Spread half remaining chocolate mixture around sides of cake. Holding the top and bottom of the cake, roll the iced sides in the almonds. Spread remaining chocolate mixture on top of cake and pipe whipped cream on top edges in a desired pattern. Decorate cream design with remaining pistachios. Chill for 45 minutes in a domed cake container and serve. Great served with hot coffee or tea.

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