225 g/8 oz/2 cups plain (semi-sweet)
225 g/8 oz/1 cup butter or margarine, softened
225 g/8 oz/1 cup caster (superfine) sugar
5 eggs, separated
225 g/8 oz/2 cups self-raising (self-rising) flour
100g/4 oz/1 cup ground almonds
For the icing (frosting):
175 g/6 oz/1 cup icing (confectioners') sugar
25 g/1 oz cocoa (unsweetened chocolate) powder
30 ml/2 tbsp Cointreau
30 ml/2 tbsp water
Blanched almonds to decorate
Melt the chocolate in a heatproof bowl
set over a pan of gently simmering water. Leave to cool slightly.
Cream together the butter or margarine and sugar until light and
fluffy. Beat in the egg yolks, then pour in the melted chocolate. Fold
in the flour and ground almonds. Beat the egg whites until stiff, then
gradually fold into the chocolate mixture. Spoon into a greased and
lined loose-bottomed 23 cm/9 in cake tin (pan) and bake in a preheated
oven at 180°C/350°F/ gas mark 4 for 1 1/4 hours until well risen and
springy to the touch. Leave to cool.
To make the icing, mix together the icing sugar and cocoa and make a
well in the centre. Warm the Cointreau and water, then gradually mix
enough of the liquid into the icing sugar to make a spread able icing.
Smooth over the cake and mark a pattern in the icing before it cools.
Decorate with almonds.