Some flavours are just meant to be together and one of them in my opinion is walnuts and coffee. There is something quite magical about the combination and in particular when added to cake generally results in a winner. Having baked this cake I can honestly say that opinion has not changed yet.
This recipe is one that is part of the revised edition of The Italian Baker by Carol Field which we are all baking from this month and next as part of The Cookbook Guru. Whilst a large part of the book is devoted to bread there is a section of sweet treats in the back and I couldn’t resist giving this recipe a go.
The cake is quite simple to make and the results are impressive. Nothing fancy in terms of presentation but it doesn’t need it as the flavour of the ingredients is the focus and they truly sing together. The texture of the cake was beautiful, soft and light and carries the walnuts well. I know a number of people, in particular my Dad, that would love this cake if it was given to him with a cup of coffee for his afternoon tea.
Rustic Walnut and Coffee Cake
- 2 cups walnuts
- 100g unsalted butter
- 2 large eggs
- 125g white sugar
- 225g plain flour
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 cup strong espresso or 3 tbl sp instant coffee dissolved in 1/2 cup warm water
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
Pre-heat your oven to approx 180c. Line and prepare your baking pan. I used a 20cm springform pan, or a loaf tin would work equally well.
Cream the sugar and butter until light and fluffy. Then add the eggs, one at a time until well combined. In a separate bowl sift the flour, baking power and salt into a bowl. Add in portions to the butter mixture, alternating with the espresso combined with the vanilla.
Separate approx 10 walnut pieces and chop very finely or gind in a grinder. These will go on the cake before going into the oven. For the remaining walnuts, chop finely and combine into the cake batter.
Spoon the batter into the baking tin and smooth out. Sprinkle the ground walnuts on the top and then place into the oven to bake for approximately 40-50 mins.
Cool completely before serving with coffee.
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