Hagrid’s cake for Harry’s 11th birthday, a chocolate cake made with lots and lots of love, was such an unforgettable moment! It’s probably his first birthday cake he can actually remember, the first time he can remember feeling loved and cared for. The power of food! Sure Hagrid isn’t the best cook ever (*cough cough* rock cakes), but what he lacks in cooking skills, he certainly makes up for in his nurturing ability. He’s been such a loving figure for Harry throughout the series and I hope my cake did him justice.
My version of Hagrid’s cake is a pretty simple chocolate cake, but still ticking all the chocolate boxes. As you bite into it you’ll get a soft chocolate ganache, an airy chocolatey crumb, and melted chocolate chips. What more could you want from a chocolate cake?
BOOK vs MOVIE
There are some differences between Hagrid’s cake in the book and in the movie. You do you but for me what is in the book is canon. I totally get why they covered the cake in pink frosting in the movie, to make the green icing stand out, fiiiiiine. However one of my pet peeves in the movies is how Hagrid is sometimes reduced to be a dumb-witted half-giant. In the movie, they actually spelled Happy Birthday wrong on the cake (“Happee Birthdae Harry”), like Hagrid wouldn’t know how to write such common words. Arggggh, it makes me so angry.
Anyway, no pink frosting for me, a correct spelling, and I tried to write the birthday message reproducing the font used for Hagrid’s handwriting in the US editions of the book but I’m terrible at piping and you probably wouldn’t get the resemblance.
The green icing to make Hagrid’s cake is optional (yes it’s green but after I edited the photos, it looked more white than anything, I probably should have made the color bolder my bad) and it produces a bit more than what you actually need to write a 3 words message. But it’s my go-to recipe for buttercream and it is fool-proof. The glaze could be optional also, sometimes I don’t bother making it as the cake is good on its own too. Nevertheless, it does make the cake moister and for all the chocolate lovers out there, it makes it even more chocolatey.
WHAT THIS CAKE IS (AND ISN’T)
Disclaimer n°1: I couldn’t make Hagrid’s cake taste bad on purpose so this chocolate cake doesn’t really reflect Hagrid’s limited kitchen material, the way it’s been slightly battered while Hagrid traveled, etc… Let’s say it’s inspired by this passage, not really an attempt to reproduce exactly Hagrid’s cake. And maybe Hagrid’s cake tasted as good as mine, Harry didn’t try it so we can’t tell, so perhaps I’m not that far off offering you a perfectly fine simple chocolate cake.
Disclaimer n°2: I couldn’t make a cake I wouldn’t enjoy on purpose either. And Hagrid’s cake being sticky is definitely something I would automatically dislike, especially if there are no fruits or caramel involved and the only reason for the cake to be sticky would be the batter. When the cake is stuck to your palate and you’re chewing and chewing and chewing. Awful. I can tolerate stickiness with a piece of fudgy brownie but with a whole slice of cake, no thank you! So this cake is the opposite of sticky.
My version of Hagrid’s cake is light, a bit moist thanks to the oil, and tastes just enough of chocolate that you’ll want to help yourself to a second slice. It’s also a very quick recipe, in half an hour your cake can be in the oven and your glaze can be prepped (don’t make it in advance, wait for your cake to be cooling down or the ganache will become too thick). If you want a stronger chocolate cake you could use chocolate with a higher percentage of cacao.
BITS OF ADVICE
➝ Why should I place chocolate chips in the freezer? Freeze (in a single layer) your chocolate chips while you get on with the recipe, and add them to the cake batter at the end. This way the frozen chocolate chips or pieces won’t melt too much while baking and you’ll have small chunks of intense chocolatiness (as Queen Nigella Lawson puts it) throughout your cake.
➝ Why should I wait for my cake to cool down before icing it? Unless you want the transparent-looking finish of a cream cheese frosting on cinnamon rolls, you should always wait for your cake to cool down before icing it. If you ice/glaze Hagrid’s cake while it’s not completely cold, 1/ your icing/ganache will melt from the heat and keep dripping down, 2/ you might make a huge mess because your cake will still be too soft and crumbly. Patience my friends.
➝ How to make Hagrid’s cake? I dare you to find a simpler chocolate cake to make! This is the definition of a one-bowl recipe. All you have to do is mix the ingredients in a mixing bowl and voilà your batter is ready! The chocolate ganache and the green icing might seem a bit more intricate but have no fear! They’re pretty easy too and even then, there are quite dispensable. The chocolate cake is very good on its own.
Are you looking for other Harry Potter recipes? Here are some of my favorites:Print
Ah Harry’s 11th birthday cake, made with lots and lots of love from our favorite half-giant! My version of Hagrid’s cake is a pretty simple chocolate cake, but still ticking all the chocolate boxes. As you bite into it you get a soft chocolate ganache, an airy and moist chocolatey crumb, and melted chocolate chips.
For the chocolate cake:
250g light brown sugar (1 ¼ cup)
1 tsp vanilla extract
120ml whole milk (½ cup)
120ml oil (½ cup)
190g flour (1 ⅓ cup)
11g baking powder (1 tbsp)
60g unsweetened cocoa powder (⅔ cup)
100g chocolate (52% cacao), chips or chopped in small pieces (½ cup)
For the chocolate ganache:
140g chocolate (52% cacao), chips or chopped into small pieces (5 oz)
180g heavy cream (¾ cup)
For the icing: (optional: Hagrid’s cake)
30g butter, softened (I leave it for about 4h at room temperature) (2 tbsp)
½ tsp vanilla extract
80g powdered sugar (½ cup)
½ tsp green food coloring
½ tbsp. milk if needed
First, make the chocolate cake:
Prepare. Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F). Butter a 20cm (10*4 inch) springform pan and line with parchment paper. Sift together the flour, baking powder and cocoa powder in a medium-size bowl. Put the chocolate chips on a plate in a single layer and place in the freezer. This way the chocolate chips won’t melt too much while baking.
Make the batter. In a large mixing bowl, use the whisk to mix the eggs and vanilla extract until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add the milk and oil and continue whisking until combined. Gradually add the sifted dry ingredients and mix until combined. Using a spatula fold in the cold chocolate chips. Pour the batter into the lined pan and smooth the surface evenly.
Bake. Bake for 45min or until a wooden toothpick inserted into the cake comes out clean. Set the pan on a wire rack to cool for 15 minutes, then unmold your simple chocolate cake directly onto a rack. If you want to glaze or ice the cake, wait for it to be completely cold first.
Then make the chocolate ganache:
Make the ganache. Put the chocolate chips/pieces in a bowl. Put the cream in a saucepan over medium heat and bring it to just below a boil, stirring from time to time. Take the pan off the heat and pour the cream over the chocolate. Stir gently with a spatula until completely blended.
Glaze the cake. Scrape the glaze into a pitcher and pour it over the cooled chocolate cake, allowing it to drip down the sides.
Optionally, make the green icing:
Make the green icing. Put the softened butter and the vanilla extract in a big mixing bowl. Mix with a hand mixer on low speed until fully combined. Add the powdered sugar to the mixing bowl. Mix, still on low speed, until combined then increase the speed to medium for 30 seconds. Scrape the side of your mixing bowl and add the food coloring.
Check the consistency. Mix on low speed and check if the icing is coming together. Add the milk if it doesn’t come together. You might need to gradually add more milk if it still seems too dry for you.
Ice the cake. When the icing is the proper consistency, scrap it in a piping bag, and cut the tip. Check if the glaze has set and then write whatever you want on Hagrid’s cake.
You can keep Hagrid’s cake for up to 3 days under a cake dome at room temperature.
- Serving Size: 1
- Calories: 493
Keywords: easy homemade chocolate cake, simple chocolate cake, harry potter recipes