Sunday, 15 May 2011

Coffee & Walnut Cake

I dont enjoy drinking coffee. Its too bitter and makes me feel slightly on edge. But its the essential beverage of choice for so many people and i feel alittle annoyed at myself for not liking it. I do however love the taste of it in chocolate and in cake form.

Eating coffee cake allows me to feel like a sophisticated coffee drinker minus the displeasing aftertaste. This cake, made with espresso powder (is that why, after one small slice, i feel alittle jittery?)is light and delicious.  

The frosting is mascarpone cream cheese based and its creamy smoothness compliments the edginess of the espresso well. I enjoyed it with a cup of Darjeeling and didnt feel quite so bad for not being a coffee drinker.


Cake sponge - recipe by Nigella Lawson from HOW TO BE A DOMESTIC GODDESS
1 cup unsalted butter, very soft
3/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 large eggs
1 1/3 cups self-raising flour
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 teaspoon baking powder (if using food processor)
3-4 tablespoons milk
1 tablespoon instant espresso powder

2 x 21cm cake tins (about 5cm deep)

Coffee and walnut frosting - recipe from food blog The Goddesses Kitchen
250g Mascarpone cream cheese
85g icing sugar - sieved
1 1/2 teaspoon instant espresso coffee powder
1 1/2 teaspoon hot water

Preheat oven to 180 degrees C/gas mark 4. Butter cake tins and line with baking parchment.

Mix all ingredients - excluding milk, for the sponge in the food processor until it turns into a smooth batter. Gradually pouring the milk down the funnel of the food processor, pulse mix until you have a soft dropping consistency. It may curdle if your ingredients are too cold but this doesnt seem to make a difference to the lightness of the sponge. 

If making without a food processor, beat the butter and sugar add vanilla and the eggs one at a time, adding a spoonful of flour between each. Fold in the flour and cornflour - you dont need to add any baking powder into this mix. When all incorporated add milk if needed.

Pour mix into the cake tins and bake for 25 minutes. Once ready the cakes should begin to come away at the edges and are springy to touch at the top, with the cake tester coming out clean. Leave cakes to cool on a wire rack for 10 minutes. Turn out and leave to cool completely.

For the frosting add the hot water to the instant espresso coffee powder and mix, beat this with the mascarpone cream cheese and sieved icing sugar until it is all incorporated and smooth. 

Take one cake layer and spread less than half of the frosting on top. Place the other cake layer on top, using the remaining frosting spread and decorate with walnuts.



  1. Yum, love coffee cake! Cant wait to try out the recipe.

  2. More cakes please!
    Mel x

  3. Yummy, the cake looks lovely please can i be your chief taster??? :) I look forward to my invite from you on your next baking session, il make sure i dont eat for a few days before :)


  4. Mel - more cakes to follow
    Ayaz - youre on, always need taste testers!