It was a grey, wet day outside, a bit muddy, but what else do you expect at this time of year, so a bit of cheering up was on the cards and I decided that I needed to do a bit of baking.
I sent a message to a very good friend who is having a bit of a tough time, saying ‘baking today, any special requests’…..?
It didn’t take long before the phone was ringing.. a very excited lady on the other end asking could I please make a Coffee & Walnut cake with coffee butter cream filling…. So that was the decision made ..
I gathered all the ingredients together and started the baking session.
I have found this recipe to be a fail safe recipe, easy to bring everything together, and 25 minutes baking time, then it is only the waiting time for the cakes to cool so the icing can be smothered over it…..
I weighed the butter into a bowl and popped it into the microwave for 10 seconds just to make sure the butter was soft and easy to whisk, I whisked it for 1 minute making sure the batter was light and soft, then I added the sugar and again whisked until it was all combined and light and fluffy.
Then it was the eggs, I added the first egg, gave it a bit of a whisk, then the second and then a spoonful of the flour mix, whisked it again then the final egg and all of the flour mix, I gave it a good whisk until it was all combined.
I used a shot of espresso coffee with 1 tablespoon of Kahlua, for the added hit, you can leave out the alcohol if you prefer.
Then it was the turn of the chopped walnuts to be added and we were there.
I buttered and lined 2 x 8 inch (20cm) cake tins and split the batter between both tins, it worked out at 493g in each tin, it is a very good idea to weigh the cake mix into the tins to ensure you have 2 equal layers, of course the weight will be slightly different each time due to the eggs.
Then I popped them into then oven 200c conventional/180c fan/Gas 5, then 24 minutes later, there was 2 beautiful golden cakes ready for the filling and toppings, the only problem is the waiting ……
Once the cakes were cool, I mixed up the coffee icing, and then I used half of the coffee butter cream for the filling and the remaining, I generously spread across the top and then a few pieces of walnuts on top for the decoration and voila it was ready……..
As you can imagine I was delighted, but it was nothing in comparison to my friend who was squealing on the other end of the phone, when I called to say it was ready…. I dropped off the cake and waited for the update.
It didn’t take long, it was delicious and they had to try another piece just to make sure it was nice, and again in the morning for mid morning coffee, just to make sure the flavour was still there…….
I am glad I thought about it as for me I love baking and a simple gesture it all it took to make her very happy.
I hope you enjoy this recipe too, we did and it is so versatile. Try it, I’m sure you will feel the same.
Coffee & Walnut Cake
Delicious coffee and walnut cake, soft and luscious with lashings of coffee butter cream. Ideal at anytime of the day.
Pre-heat the oven to 200c conventional/180c fan/Gas 5.
Butter and line 2 x 8 inch (20 cm) cake tins.
Weigh the butter into a bowl and if need be, place it into the microwave for 10 seconds, to ensure the butter is nice and soft.
Using an electric whisk, beat the butter until it is light and fluffly.
Add the sugar to the bowl with the butter and whisk again until it is all combined and light and fluffy.
Weigh the flour into a bowl and add the baking flour, stir to combine.
Add the first 2 eggs, individually and beat them into the butter and sugar mixture, then add the 3rd egg and a little flour (this will stop it from curdling). whisk again and then add the final egg and the remaining flour mixture.
Add the coffee and again using the whisk, mix to ensure the coffee is fully combined into the mixture.
Chop the walnuts (not too small) and add to the batter, again giving the mixture a quick whisk to make sure everything is well combined.
Place 1 of the baking tins on to your scales and pour half of the batter into 1 tin, then do the same with the tin and half of the batter.
I managed to get 493g into each tin, it is useful to weigh the mixture into the tins to ensure you get 2 equal layers to your cake.
It is the eggs that will change the final weight of your layers.
Place the tins into the oven, for 25 minutes, check with a toothpick to ensure that they are completely cooked in the centre.
Remove the cakes from the oven and allow to cook in the tins for 5 minutes, before removing and allow to cool completely on a rack.
Once the cakes are cool, place in a fridge for 30 minutes to ensure they are completely cold before icing.
(You can place them in the freezer for 15 minutes if needed)
Coffee Butter Cream
Place the butter into a medium bowl and place in the microwave to soften (if required). Add the icing sugar and mix together with a spoon to bring together, add the coffee or liquor (your perference). Mix together. Then using an electric whisk, whisk the contents of the bowl together at medium/high speed for 3-4 minutes until you have a light fluffy butter cream.
Leave to the side until the cake is completely cold, before adding the butter cream to the top of both layers.
Place one layer on top of the other and then dress with the remaining walnut pieces.
Remember to weigh the batter into your cake tins, this will ensure that you have 2 even layers for your cake.
Today I have been sorting out my ingredients and shopping lists for a Wedding this weekend (the full details are in an up and coming post) that I am making the Vegetarian canapes and mains and salads for 11 wedding guests.
Blue Cheese, Pear and Walnut tart
I was working through my recipes and it was staring me in the face, these wonderful buttery, puff pastry tarts with blue cheese, pears and walnuts, mmm, oh yes, delicious.
I often serve these tarts, as they are a great crowd pleaser, the richness of the blue cheese and the sweetness of the poached pears.
This recipe is a great go-to recipe, as it only takes some puff pastry, poached pears and some creamy blue cheese.
Which reminds me……
About 2 years ago, I was serving the tarts as a starter for guests we had coming to stay over for 1 night. We had gone to the supermarket in the Saturday morning to buy the weeks shopping and the food for the following evening when our guests were due to arrive.
It was a very nice day and we went off to a Chinese buffet restaurant for a lunch, and made the most of the buffet items, going back for 2nd helpings. We headed back home, unpacked all the bags and settled down to enjoy the evening with a little glass of wine and a bit of TV.
Just then the telephone rang at 7.15 pm, it was the guests to say they were 20 minutes away………..OMG I got the date wrong, luckily the room was ready and of course we had all the shopping in……
So it was all hands to the pump, we went into work mode and started the food preparations.
The guests arrived, I showed them to their room and told them to come to the dinning room when they were ready.
The starters were these individual Blue Cheese, Pear and Walnut tarts, cutting the puff pastry sheets into the ideal size for individual tarts, then topping the pastry with the wonderful sweet poached pear slices and then the final flourish was the broken pieces of walnuts added to the top, then it was in the oven for 20 minutes, enough time to brown the puff pastry and to melt the cheese…. mmmmm…….. I can smell the aroma now.
We had another 3 courses to prepare, mains, cheese and dessert. As I have said already we had just been to the supermarket a few hours before and I knew what the menu was, of course, so it was just getting everything on the plates without the guests realising I wasn’t expecting them to the following day……
The tarts are wonderful for lunch and starters, you have the classic combination of the blue cheese, sweet pears and the creamy crunch of the walnuts.
You will have to take my word for it, but I can assure you that the guests thoroughly enjoyed their starter that evening, and so have the others that have also had the pleasure of enjoying them too.
I hope you enjoy this recipe, it is one of my favorites
Blue Cheese, Pear & Walnut Tart
Buttery puff pastry tarts with Blue Cheese, poached pears and walnuts.