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The Irish Boutique is an Irish import store that has been located in the Chicago land area for over 40 years.  The shop stocks a variety of products ranging from Irish jewelry, crystal, china, food, sweaters, caps, t-shirts and a wide variety of Irish gifts. 

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A Sweet Welcome: Chocolate Biscuit Cake

john barry

The cast of characters.

The cast of characters.

We have some new neighbors across the street. Emmett and I, as is quickly becoming our mother-son tradition, decided to bake something to welcome them to their new home.  We made a huge batch of chocolate chip cookies and then decided to try something new to add to the basket of goodies we were bringing over.

Kelly, a friend of the stores, sent this recipe to my brother-in-law who forwarded it to me. She spotted this cake in many cafes and bakeries throughout Ireland and noticed that everything needed to make it is available at the Irish Boutique.  It’s really a great idea and one that is so easy and straightforward. Emmett will probably be able to make this all by himself soon enough. Let’s face it, he’ll probably do a better job than I did.

If I’m being honest, this was almost a recipe fail. Isn’t it funny how it can be easier to execute a recipe that involves several components and techniques than one that is basically an assembly-only task? Well, I totally rushed through this one and didn’t trust my instincts but you know what? I think it actually worked out for the best. In fact, since I still have NO IDEA what this was supposed to turn out like, I may have executed it perfectly. The bottom line is that the result was delicious and we had a lot of fun making this.

As you can see from the recipe below, it’s a simple process, a lot like making rice krispie treats. The reason I’m not so sure I did this correctly is because, based on the chocolate biscuit cakes I’ve seen before, including, famously, Prince William’s groom’s cake, the ratio of chocolate to biscuits is usually much higher. This was almost all biscuits held together by a little bit of the syrup-butter-chocolate mixture and definitely had more of a crisp cookie-like texture than that of a cake.

I had my doubts about including all of the crushed cookies when I looked at the amount of syrup-butter-chocolate mixture but went ahead and added them all anyway. Truth be told, I’m glad that I did! I loved the texture of this and the fact that I could taste the biscuits without having them overpowered by chocolate. And, for me, it would have been way too sweet if I changed the ratio of biscuits to chocolate.  It’s still quite sweet and boy, did my middle one Isla enjoy her piece.  So did my co-workers who devoured a tin of them in no time. I would like to try this one again using dark chocolate instead of milk and substituting some of the chocolate called for with unsweetened chocolate (though I’m pretty sure the rest of the family will still prefer this version). I know a couple of little people who would be happy to serve as my cookie smashers.

Thank goodness Isla was napping for this. Otherwise I'm sure there would have been a fight for the crown of No. 1 Biscuit Crusher. 

Thank goodness Isla was napping for this. Otherwise I'm sure there would have been a fight for the crown of No. 1 Biscuit Crusher. 

Chocolate biscuit cake

275g (10 oz; 2 ¼ sticks) Kerrygold Irish butter

150ml (about ⅔ cup) Lyle’s golden syrup

225g (8oz) Good chocolate -  Cadbury works very well*

200g (7oz) Digestive biscuits - broken into small pieces*

200g (7 oz) Rich tea biscuits - broken into small pieces

Packet of Maltesers

You can also add a variety of add ins, like smashed up crunchie bars, raisins,  cherries ,nuts etc.

*If  you want it to be more like Prince William’s reduce the amount of biscuits by ½ (about 7 oz).

Line a 2 pound loaf tin with a double layer of parchment paper.  

He flung the rolling pin aside and got in there with his hands. 

He flung the rolling pin aside and got in there with his hands. 

Break biscuits into small pieces.

Melt chocolate in double boiler, add syrup and butter and mix until smooth, being careful not to overheat the chocolate.  

Remove from double boiler and add to your bowl of broken biscuits and stir in maltesers.  Combine until evenly coated.

Scoop mixture into prepared tin.  

Place another piece of parchment on top of cake and press down on loaf to remove any air pockets.  

Cover completely and refrigerate for a few hours.  Once chilled you can remove from pan and slice and serve.  

It is a rich tasting cake so start with small slices to serve.