The World's Best Chocolate Cakes

13th January 2004

You remember chocolate crispies? Those cakes you made when you were seven, by melting chocolate, mixing in cornflakes and spooning the mixture out into little lumps to set? It turns out that this humble recipe, lightly tweaked, makes the most awesomely addictive cakes imaginable. I am pretty much physically not capable of eating just one of these. Two is never enough. Three is barely adequate.



  1. Boil a small amount of water in a pan. Keep it gently simmering, put a bowl over the water and break the chocolate into it. Wait until it's melted, stirring gently if necessary.
  2. Chop the butter into thin slices and add them to the chocolate. Stir until melted.
  3. Pour in the golden syrup. It's hard to say what amount I use, but I'd guess it's maybe two heaped tablespoons, if ``heaped'' is the right word for golden syrup. DO NOT use honey for this recipe - it gives a completely different result which is still nice, but doesn't have the close-to-magical effect of using syrup. Why is this? I suspect it's because there's a suble salty undertaste to golden syrup that sets off the sweetness. I keep meaning to try this recipe with a little added salt, but never get round to it. It might also be worth trying with maple syrup instead of golden.
  4. Now you have a bowl of thick liquid chocolate/butter/syrup mixture. Take it off the heat. Now you need to add just the right amount of cornflakes to make a thick mixture that will set into individual cakes. There really no substitute for doing this by feel: adding some, stirring and considering. But if it's any use to you, I generally start by adding ``a couple of generous handfuls'' and then a bit more as necessary. It's probably better to use too few cornflakes than too many, so be careful out there.
  5. Once all the cornflakes are nicely coated, mix in the raisins.
  6. Scoop the mixture out into about 24 separate lumps. I find the best surface to use is a bread-board covered with a layer of aluminium foil. Then I can pop the whole thing in the fridge, and the cakes will peel of easily once they've set.
  7. LEAVE THEM OVERNIGHT! I know it's tempting to eat one after just a couple of hours, but they're nowhere near as good then as they are the next day, when the chocolate mixture has properly solidified.

I love this recipe because it's one of those where the whole seems to be greater than the sum of the parts. I know what chocolate, butter, golden syrup, cornflakes and raisins taste like individually, and there is no way that they should be able to combine into such a wonderful flavour as they do. But they do.

Ah, the subtle alchemy of cookery!

Feedback to <> is welcome!