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    Chocolate Cherry Cream Cakes

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    Chocolate Cherry Cream Cakes

    Once you have mastered how to make a basic victoria sponge cake, you can vary the recipe to create all kinds of different cakes. For example, if you replace 20 per cent of the flour with cocoa powder, as here, you can create a chocolate sponge (you don't want too great a percentage of cocoa, or the cake will turn out to be too heavy). Furthermore, the mixture will bake just as well in a muffin tray, giving you individual cakes, which look wonderful on the buffet table, or with afternoon tea

    • Vegetarian
    • Preparation time: 25 minutes
    • Cooking time: 20 minutes, plus cooling
    • Total time: 45 minutes, plus cooling 45 minutes

    Makes: 12 cakes


    • 220g butter, softened, plus extra for greasing
    • 220g caster sugar, plus extra for dredging
    • 4 medium eggs, lightly beaten
    • 175g self-raising flour
    • 45g cocoa powder
    • Extra cocoa powder, plus icing sugar, for dredging
    • Pinch of salt
    • 142ml carton double cream, whipped
    • 4 tbsp black cherry conserve


    1. Preheat the oven to to 180°C, gas mark 4. Butter a 12-cup muffin tin (use one with cups measuring 7cm in diameter and 4cm deep).
    2. Beat the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Gradually add the egg, with a spoonful of flour at each addition. Sift the remaining flour and cocoa together, add the pinch of salt and fold into the mixture with a large metal spoon. Use to fill the muffin cups and bake for 15-20 minutes or until cooked through. After 5 minutes cooling in the tin, turn the cakes out on to a cooling rack and leave to cool completely.
    3. To serve, slice the cakes in half horizontally. Place a dollop of whipped cream on the base, add a generous spoonful of black cherry conserve and top with the remaining cake half. Don't worry if the filling oozes out a little - this makes the cakes look even more delectable. Lightly dredge a mixture of icing sugar and cocoa powder over the cakes and serve with afternoon tea.

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