3 cups/385 g all-purpose/plain flour
2 2/3 cups/530 g granulated sugar
1 cup/100 g cocoa powder, plus more for dusting
1 1/2 tsp baking soda/bicarbonate of soda
3/4 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp fine sea salt
1 3/4 cups/420 ml warm water
1 cup/240 ml vegetable or grapeseed oil
4 tbsp/55 g melted butter, plus more for the pans
5 large eggs
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups/340 g unsalted butter, at room temperature
3 tbsp/45 ml agave nectar or honey
1/2 cup/50 g confectioners'/icing sugar
1 1/4 cup/120 g cocoa powder
1/4 cup/60 ml warm water
1/4 cup/60 ml cold heavy/double cream
If you want a deep, dark chocolate flavor, use Dutch-process cocoa. For an old-fashioned-quality cake, use natural cocoa.
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Lots of recipes call for melted chocolate. Follow these step-by-step instructions to do it properly.