this rich chocolate coated Italian cake tastes so deliciously Italian, it’s not that sweet and packed with cocoa, honey, spices and almonds. It’s traditionally served in the winter and at Christmas in Italy with a glass of wine or beer and it’s perfect after dinner with an aprés dinner cheese course. It can also be entirely plant based, as it says in my recipe notes. I find it tastes even nicer after a few days when all those delicious spicy flavours have matured.


100g of dark chocolate

200g of plain flour

80g of unsweetened cocoa powder

1/2 tsp of cinnamon

pinch of nutmeg

1/4 tsp of ground cloves

1/2 tsp of baking powder

1/2 cup of runny honey, maple syrup or agave.

100g of whole almonds

100g of chopped candied peel

100ml of warm milk (or plant based milk)

Freshly ground pepper


Preheat the oven to 150c/ 300f and line

a shallow baking tray with a silicone sheet or parchment paper.

In a large bowl, mix together flour, cocoa

powder, spices and baking powder. Add the honey, almonds and candied peel and mix firstly with a spoon and then with your hands. Add the warm milk to the

mixture a tablespoon at a time, mixing until you have a dough. If

mixture is too dry, add some more milk until it forms a ball. Place on the prepared baking tray and shape it into a round slightly flattened dome. Bake for 50 to 60 minutes or until it sounds hollow when tapped (like a loaf of bread) mine came out a bit cracked, however you will be covering it chocolate so it doesn’t matter if that happens. Place on a cooling rack to cool.

Once cool, melt the dark chocolate and spread a thick layer over the bottom of the cake, I do this with a paint brush that is only used for food, then leave to set. Do the same for the top of the cake, and leave to set. Keeps in an airtight container for weeks.

and it’s delicious with chunks of parmesan

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