2 cups plain flour
1 1/4 tspn bicarbonate soda
1 tspn salt
1/4 tspn baking powder
1 cup boiling water
2/3 cups cocoa powder
170 g butter, at room temperature
1 1/2 cup caster sugar
2 x eggs
1 tspn vanilla essence
250 g dark chocolate, chopped (for frosting)
250 g butter, softened (for frosting)
1/2 cup pure icing sugar, sifted (for frosting)
2/3 cups sour cream (for frosting)
1/4 tspn salt (for frosting)
200 g dark chocolate, chopped (for ganache)
100 g unsalted butter, chopped (for ganache)
1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius. Grease and line the base and sides of a 9cm – deep, 20cm round loose base cake pan.
2. In a large bowl, combine flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Set aside.
3. Mix hot water and cocoa powder in a heatproof bowl until dissolved. Set aside for 5 minutes to cool.
4. Using an electric mixer, beat butter for 30 seconds and then gradually add sugar. Beat for 2 minutes.
5. Add eggs one at a time and then beat in the vanilla until fluffy. Gradually add the flour mixture and cocoa mixture in three parts until just blended.
6. Pour the mixture into the prepared pan and bake for 1 hour and 20 minutes or until a skewer inserted comes out clean. Cool cake for 20 minutes. Turn cake onto a wire rack, top-side up. Cool completely.
7.To make the frosting: Melt chocolate in a heatproof bowl set over a saucepan of simmering water (don’t let the bowl touch the water). Stir occasionally until melted. Cool for 5 minutes. Using an electric mixer, beat butter, sugar and salt until light and fluffy. Gradually beat in chocolate, then sour cream, beating until well combined.
8. Cut cake into 3 even layers. Place base on a serving plate. Spread with 1/2 of the frosting. Repeat with the second layer. Refrigerate while preparing the chocolate ganache.
9.To make the chocolate ganache: Melt chocolate in a heatproof bowl over simmering water (again, don’t let the bowl touch the water). Gradually add butter and stir until smooth. Set aside for 5 minutes to cool. Drizzle over the cake and decorate with pomegranate seeds and cherries. Serve immediately.