Malted Rye Chocolate Cake

I care about my body and my mind. The thrill of them both feeling ace when I wake up, is really very special.

I used to feel like I had woken up underneath a lawnmower. I hate feeling like shit.

Being consistently under par is not good for me (or for, erm, society). Nah-aw. I can’t be a good human on a diet of processed junk. It’s just not possible. I deserve to feel amazing, and have learned just how easy it is to maintain.

The first step is to start lovebombing your kitchen space. Pick some podcasts to make your dimples hurt with laughter. Own that zone. This is where the magic happens. So much of our diet is contingent on mood and convenience. If we curate both of these in our very own kitchen, then we stand a chance of giving our body the grub it so desperately needs.



The second step is to ditch diets. Anyone notice that dieting doesn’t seem to be a terribly effective route to losing excess weight?

An industry does not grow into a $60 billion bonanza by permanently solving the problem it is designed to address. Guh! If you’re going to count something, count nutrients, not calories.


Malted rye chocolate cake

Can be frozen in slices


Here’s one way you can start switching out processed white flour and white sugar, for something more wholesome. The ingredients in this cake are totemic of a modern, wholefoods whore; barley malt, rye, home-made ghee, and dark chocolate. When I am poofing my final breath, and my life flashes before my eyes, there is no doubt that this chocolate cake will loom large like an illicit peep show portal. You’re about to find out why.


200g ghee or butter
200g dark chocolate
3 eggs
100ml malted barley
100g coconut, rapadura or muscavado sugar
½ teaspoon flaky sea salt
100g whole rye flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
nip of lemon juice


Whack up your oven to 150 Celsius. Now let the chocolate and Irish ghee party over a pot of simmering water, until gorgeously glossy. This is called a bain marie. If you’re not into ghee, you could use butter.

Measure the barley malt, sugar and eggs into a bowl and beat until bubbly. Whisk in the melted chocolate and ghee. Now add your flour, salt, lemon and raising agent.

Find a 23cm (9inch) circular springform tin, or something similar. Line with baking parchment to prevent tantrums and sticking. Pour the cake mixture in, and bake for 30 minutes. Let it cool before looting.


Taking the hell out of healthy.

Hit “BOOM” at the top left corner with your email address my friend, to receive new monthly recipes direct to your inbox.  Here’s hoping 2018 will be your most exciting year yet!



This article has 8 comments

  1. Susie Fletcher

    Hi Susan , Just received the Virtuous Tart and perusing it excitedly.
    What is your take on BPA present in plastic food storage containers please? I use them for storing perishables in the larder. Thanks

    1. Susan Jane

      Hi Susie. Glad to hear I reached your kitchen. Thank you! All my containers are glass – I simply reuse the glass jars that find their way into my weekly shopping. The way I look at BPA is, if EU legislators banned it from baby bottles, there’s sufficient evidence to suggest we are ingesting it. Better safe than sorry, but don’t freak out! You could gradually transition to reusable glass containers for peace of mind.

  2. Caroline

    Ooooh… This might have to be my business’ 4th birthday (or BLRTday!) celebratory cake on 15th January!!! Sounds DELICIOUS! Also like that it can be frozen for later choccy top ups rather than needing to wolf it all too quickly! Could the ghee/butter be substituted with Pure soya margarine instead?

    1. Susan Jane

      It probably could, but ghee doesn’t have any lactose if that’s what you’re dodging? (I’m assuming you’re not vegan if you’re keeping the eggs in). Maybe add extra vanilla to the recipe – most of the taste comes from, ahem, the great ghee. SJ

      1. Caroline

        Spot on! Am lactose dodging but also hard to get special ingredients sometimes out in the sticks! Will see if can track some down (as from what you’ve written about if before it sounds like it is the business!)or else will try adding the vanilla with the soya. Thanks so much! Will post a pic of it on the 15th! x

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