Thursday, April 18, 2013

Coffee and Walnut Cake

 photo coffeepost_zps186e0561.jpg
Makes two 20cm (8inch) cakes, which can be sandwiched together to make one layer cake.
175g unsalted butter, at room temperature
175g golden caster sugar
3 large eggs, free-range or organic
175g self raising flour, sifted
1 1/2 tablespoons instant coffee mixed with 2 tablespoons of boiling water

For the syrup
1 tablespoon instant coffee
50g demerara sugar
55ml boiling water

To decorate
1 1/2 batches of Coffee Buttercream Icing 
10-12 walnut halves

For a most delicious coffee cake, inspired by one of Delia Smith's recipes. Combined with coffee buttercream, it is a coffee-cake connoisseur's delight.

Preheat the oven to 170°C (fan)/190°C/375°F/gas mark 5. Grease and baseline two 20cm cake tins.

In a large mixing bowl cream the butter and sugar until the mixture is pale and smooth, which should take 3-5 minutes using an electric mixer. Add the eggs, one at a time, mixing for a few minutes after each addition. Add the flour and baking powder and beat well.

Grind the walnuts in a food processor for about 30 seconds or so - they should not be too fine. Add the coffee and ground walnuts to the batter and mix again but no more than 3-4 seconds. The mixture should have a marbled effect and it is very important not to over mix or you will take all the air out of the cakes.

Divide the mixture evenly between the tins and bake in the oven for about 25 minutes until raised and golden brown. Insert a skewer in the centre of one of the cakes - it should come out clean if it is cooked.

Remove from the oven and let the cakes cool in their tins. Make up the syrup by combining the ingredientas in a jug and stirring well to ensure the sugar dissolves completely. After 10-15 minutes, prick the sponges with a fork, brush on the syrup and leave it to soak in.

When you are ready to ice the cakes, carefully turn them out of their tins and peel the greaseproof paper from the bases. Place one cake on a plate and spread a thin layer of coffee buttercream over it. Place the second cake on top and use the rest of the buttercream to cover the upper surface. Decorate with the walnut halves around the edge.

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