Brazilian Coffee & Chocolate Cake

Morning all! This week’s entry is coming from a slightly hungover-and-feeling-very-sorry-for-myself Helena who is wishing she had some cake to munch on after drinking too much wine last night and is going to stop talking about herself in first person right about now! I’ll be running race for life later today so am starting to regret the several glasses of wine that I managed to get through at a world cup barbecue last night – wish me luck because I will definitely need it!!

Anyway, since the 2014 FIFA World Cup kicked off this week I thought that I’d share with you all a recipe I made to celebrate the occasion here in England! Sugar, coffee & cocoa are three of Brazil’s biggest exports so it made perfect sense for me to bake something that brought out everyones inner Bruce Bogtrotter (one of my favourite Roald Dahl characters) whilst bringing these three ingredients together – a great big rich chocolate cake.

While I was recipe hunting I was a bit slow catching on to the fact that an American coffee cake is a cake you simply enjoy with a cup of coffee rather than a cake that is actually flavoured with coffee – but after realising this and failing to find a recipe online that inspired me I turned to my trusty Hummingbird Bakery books to see me through. This recipe is slightly adapted from the one given in their Cake Days book and as with any other hummingbird recipe gets my seal of approval 🙂

The coffee flavour isn’t too overpowering and compliments the chocolate perfectly – I was bait dubious about having a slice as I’m not a fan of coffee at all but I was pleasantly surprised with how subtle the flavour was and how rich and chocolately the cake was instead. The milk & coffee make the cake super moist so it really does go perfectly with a nice cup of tea on one of these rainy afternoons we seem to be getting over here again recently.

I just hope England’s performance improves after last nights disappointing start – if only so I’ve got an excuse to bake some more treats like this! Although saying that, I’ll almost definitely find an excuse to do that anyway; world cup or not 😉 Enjoy!

Ingredients (Serves 16-20)

For the cake:

190g Unsalted Butter, softened

190g Caster Sugar

3 Eggs

130g Self Raising Flour

60g Good Quality Cocoa Powder

1 Tsp Ground Coffee Granules

20ml Milk (any kind works)

2 Tbsp Strong, Freshly Brewed Coffee, cooled

For the icing glaze:

1 Tbsp Icing Sugar

1 Tbsp Cocoa Powder

30ml Freshly Brewed Coffee, cooled

For the decoration:

50g Dark Chocolate (minimum 70% cocoa solids)

1 Tbsp Icing Sugar

4 Brazil Nuts, chopped up

Recipe

For the cake:

– Preheat the oven to 180C/160C Fan/350F and grease and line your cake tin with greaseproof paper (or, if using a bundt tin grease the inside of the tin and dust lightly with flour).

Prepare the strong coffee (1 tbsp coffee granules to 1 cup boiling water) and leave to one side to cool).

Add the butter and sugar to a large mixing bowl and cream together for at least 5 minutes until light and fluffy.

Beat the eggs into the creamed butter and sugar, mixing well after each addition and scraping any unmixed ingredients down from the side of the bowl as you go along.

In a separate mixing bowl, sift together the flour, cocoa powder and ground coffee granules and put to one side. In a measuring jug mix together the cooled coffee and milk.

Add half of the dry ingredients to the cake batter and fold in before adding half of the milky coffee mix and mixing this in. Repeat the process until all the ingredients have been combined.

Pour the cake batter into your prepared cake in and smooth the surface using a spatula or the back of a dessert spoon.

Bake the cake in the centre of the oven for 40-60 minutes, checking after 40 minutes as oven temperatures vary and different sized cake tins will affect the cooking time.

The cake is baked when it is firm and springy to the touch and a skewer can be inserted into the centre of the cake and come out clean. When you know the cake is ready, remove from the oven and leave to cool in it’s tin for 5-10 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.

* As soon as you remove the cake from the oven prepare the coffee icing glaze as you need to drizzle it over the cake whilst it’s still warm.

For the icing glaze:

You want to drizzle this over the cake whilst it’s still warm so make sure you prepare it as soon as the cake is out of the oven!

Sift together the icing sugar and cocoa powder and add in 1tsp of the prepared cooled coffee. Stir everything together and add in more coffee a teaspoon at a time to loosen the icing up – you want it the consistency of warm runny honey.

Add the icing to a sandwich bag and snip off a small hole in the corner. Drizzle the icing over the cake and leave to one side to cool completely.

For the decoration:

Melt the dark chocolate in a heatproof bowl over a saucepan of simmering water – making sure the bottom of the bowl doesn’t touch the water. Stir occasionally until the chocolate is completely melted.

Transfer the chocolate to a sandwich bag and snip off a small hole in the corner. Drizzle the melted chocolate over the cake and sprinkle the chopped brazil nuts on top of that. Serve up your masterpiece with cream or ice cream on the side and enjoy!

* You can also use a spoon to drizzle the chocolate over the cake.

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Have you been in the kitchen preparing any world cup-themed foods?

Helena x

 

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