It is officially a year since FrugalFeeding opened its e-pages for “business”. So, I thought I’d mark the occasion with a suitably successful and enormously delicious coffee and walnut cake. To be honest, gushing about how much I’ve loved blogging is neither British, nor is it me. So, we shall forgo such sickening pleasantries. After all, I wouldn’t want to disappoint you “yanks” by omitting both my British personality and all the frightfully offensive colloquialisms that go hand-in-hand with it. In all seriousness, I am pleasantly surprised that FrugalFeeding has proved quite so popular – it is quite a shock to me that it has made it this far. Here’s to yet another frugal year!
My grandmother’s signature bake, to make use of a term used with startling frequency in The Great British Bake Off, simply must be the good old coffee cake. Though her cake batter doesn’t contain walnuts, it is from her that I have drawn the inspiration for this delight. When making this cake the aim was to keep the flavour of the walnuts and the coffee rather separate. As such, you’ll find that the cake itself takes on the flavour of the nuts, whilst the icing darkens the taste with a beautifully delicious coffee kick. Please use a good quality coffee when attempting this, instant coffee simply will not do. Whip out your cafetière or percolator and make a jolly large batch of coffee, using a dark bean – number four on the bean scale will do nicely. Other than that you may all go wild and enjoy this delicious dessert.
Coffee and Walnut Cake
Makes 1 cake with two layers
For the Sponge:
• 3 eggs, weighed
• Butter, caster sugar and self-raising flour in equal measure – in order to get exact amounts weigh the eggs and use the same weight of these ingredients, this should be roughly 7 ounces or 200g.
• 100g finely chopped walnuts
• 70ml “real” coffee (see above)
For the Icing:
• 200g cream cheese
• 70g butter, at room temperature
• 50-70ml “real” coffee
• 150g icing sugar, sifted
• Whole walnut halves for decoration
1. Grease and line two 18cm sandwich tins, heat oven to 180C.
2. Cream together the sugar and the butter, with a hand whisk, until light and fluffy.
3. Beat in the eggs one by one. This requires thorough mixing between each egg. Whisk in the prepared coffee.
4. Sieve in the flour and fold in gently until just mixed. Fold in the walnuts and divide between the sandwich tins. Bake for around 25 minutes, or until they make no sound when listened to.
5. Allow to rest before turning onto a wire rack. Prepare the icing by beating the constituent ingredients together until uniform. You may need less coffee, see how it goes. Place in the fridge for 30 minutes before decorating.
Cost: Cakes like this cost pittance, especially when one has one’s own chickens. Surely one can’t put a price on a blog’s birthday cake. However, if backed into a corner I’d be forced to divulge. Under such circumstances my reply would be: ‘roughly £2.50, but for you… nothing.’