Prep time: 20 minutes
Total time: 1 hour 30 minutes
200 grams unsalted butter, softened, plus more for greasing
250 grams caster sugar
60 grams desiccated coconut
scraped seeds of 1 vanilla pod
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
4 large eggs
180 grams ground almonds
for the water ganache:
60 grams cooking chocolate (70% cocoa solids), roughly chopped into 1 cm pieces
25 grams caster sugar
25 grams liquid glucose
scraped seeds of 1/4 vanilla pod
25 grams unsalted butter, at room temperature, cut into 2cm cubes
1. Preheat the oven to 180°C/160°C Fan/Gas mark 4. Grease the base and sides of the 900 gram loaf tin or 23 cm round springform tin and line with baking parchment, then set aside.
2. Place the butter, sugar, and desiccated coconut, vanilla, and salt in an electric mixer with the paddle attachment in place. Beat on a medium-high speed until pale and fluffy: about 3 minutes. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Reduce the speed to low, add the ground almonds, and mix until just combined.
3. Scrape the mixture into the cake tin and bake for either 40 minutes if using the loaf tin, or 50 minutes if using the round tin, or until the cake is golden brown on top and a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean. Remove the cake from the oven and set aside to cool in the tin before inverting onto a serving plate. Set aside until completely cool.
4. Make the water ganache when you are ready to serve, Place the chocolate in a medium bowl and set aside. Put the sugar and glucose in a small saucepan and place over a medium-low heat. Stir to combine and, when the sugar has melted, increase the heat to medium and bring to the boil, stirring gently from time to time. Continue to boil for about 7 minutes, until the color is a pale amber. Remove from the heat and carefully pour in 3 tablespoons of water. Don't worry if the mix seizes; just return the pan to the heat, add the scraped vanilla seeds, and stir gently and continuously until it returns to the boil and the sugar has melted again. Remove from the heat and wait for a minute before pouring the water-caramel over the chocolate. Allow to stand for about 3 minutes, then whisk to combine. Add the butter, a couple of cubes at a time, whisking after each addition. Continue until all the butter has been added, whisking to combine until the consistency is that of golden syrup.
5. Spread the ganache over the top of the cake, letting a little run down the sides.
This recipe is reprinted with permission from Sweet by Yotam Ottolenghi and Helen Goh (Ebury Press)