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It’s Fair Trade Fortnight – and nearly Mother’s day and so I decided to combine the two events as this weekend we’re at my parents’ house visiting Drayton Manor Park.  I’m no great shakes in the kitchen when it comes to an ordinary meal, but I know my way around a chocolate cake – and there’s no one in my family who doesn’t like to eat them.

Since it’s a Mother’s Day cake, and as the boys are full of cakes and sweets at Granny and Grandad’s house, this is a grown up cake.  A raspberry and chocolate rum cake.  No little boys bellies allowed.  

We’re using our favourite dark and delicious, slightly bitter chocolate rum from Demijohn in Worcester, where I was born [we also discovered we could make the most indulgent cocktails last Summer with this rum] and which is in a double-heart shaped bottle too.  This may or may not be our third bottle.
The fair-trade elements that are going into the cake are the chocolate, which we bought from our local Waitrose, and the roses that decorate the top – which we sourced from our Co-Operative as they always have beautiful coloured blooms, peeping at me though the doorway and fresh every morning as I buy the boys’ pains au chocolat for breakfast.
If you were like me and you’ve heard the term Fair Trade being thrown around, but aren’t really sure what it means, essentially you’re buying products which have been produced on the farm or plantation of a small scale farmer whose organisation meets necessary social, economic and environmental standards.  

Buying these products should help small scale producers to earn a living, support themselves and their family without having to rely on aid.  You can read more on the Fair Trade Fortnight website and learn about the struggles of farmers and families who produce food for others, yet can’t afford to feed their own families.  The stories are shocking and saddening.

Fair Trade Chocolate Ganache


250g Dark [Plain] Fair-Trade Chocolate
235ml Double Cream

Chop the chocolate into small pieces and place into a bowl
Heat cream in saucepan over medium heat, bring to boil very carefully
Pour cream over chopped chocolate, whisk until smooth

Raspberry Cream Filling


250g Fresh Raspberries
3 Tablespoons Icing Sugar
480ml Whipping Cream

Mash raspberries with fork
Mix cream and icing sugar on high speed until soft peaks form in the mixture
Gently fold raspberries in with spatula

Fair Trade Chocolate Rum Cake


3 shallow 7″ cake tins
200g Dark [Plain] Chocolate
75g Self Raising Flour [Sieved]
100g Unsalted Butter [Cubed]
3 Large Eggs [Separated]
100g Dark Muscovado Sugar
50ml Demijohn Dark Chocolate Rum


Step One
Preheat the oven to Gas Mark 4/ 180°C/160°C {Fan Assisted]
Butter the cake tins and line bases with parchment.

Step Two
Break the chocolate into pieces and melt with the butter gently over a pan of barely simmering water or in a microwave, stirring occasionally. 
Allow to cool slightly. 
Whisk the egg yolks and sugar in a large bowl until creamy. 
Add the rum and cooled chocolate mixture then mix well. 
Gently fold in the flour.

Step three
Whisk the egg whites in separate bowl until stiff then lightly fold into the mixture. 
Step Four
Distribute cake mixture between the tins and level gently.

One last tip – don’t forget to allow the ganache to cool a little before pouring it over your cake.

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