Coffee and walnut cake
serves / 8 prep / 15 minutes cook / 40 minutes
200g softened unsalted butter, chopped
1⁄ firmly packed cup (125g) 2 brown sugar
1⁄ cup (110g) caster sugar 2 3 eggs
1 1⁄ cups (200g) plain flour, 3 sifted
1⁄ tsp baking powder 2
1 cup (120g) chopped walnuts, plus extra to serve 90ml coffee essence
1 1⁄ cups (200g) icing sugar, 3 sifted COFFEE BUTTERCREAM: 120g softened unsalted butter, chopped
2 2⁄ cups (250g) icing sugar 3 2 tbsp coffee essence
1. Preheat the oven to 180C. Grease and line a 23cm x 12cm x 7cm loaf pan.
2. Beat butter, brown sugar and caster sugar with electric beaters until thick and pale. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Fold in the flour and baking powder, followed by the milk, walnuts and 50ml coffee essence. Spoon into the pan and bake for 35-40 minutes until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. Cool slightly, then turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely.
3. For the buttercream, beat the butter, icing sugar and coffee essence with electric beaters until thick and pale.
4. Slice the cake horizontally into 3 layers. Place bottom layer on a serving plate and spread with half the buttercream. Top with another layer and remaining buttercream, then place remaining cake layer on top.
5. To make the icing, place icing sugar and remaining 2 tablespoons of coffee essence in a bowl and stir until smooth. Pour over the cake, allowing it to drip down the sides. Garnish with extra nuts, then serve. Recipe by Valli Little Photo by Jeremy Simons