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Tuesday, 9 October 2012

Easy Coffee and Walnut Sponge Cake

As requested here is my very easy fool-proof recipe:

8 oz Soft Butter
8 oz Caster Sugar
8 oz Self Raising Flour
4 Eggs
2 teaspoons Baking Powder
1 teaspoon Instant Coffee (enough boiling water to dissolve – leave to cool)
½ packet (approx. 4 oz Chopped Walnuts)- keep aside some to add in the middle of the sponge and large pieces or halves to decorate

Coffee and walnut butter icing (amount to individual taste) for middle
1 teaspoon dissolved Instant Coffee
Walnut pieces

Coffee icing for top and side
1 teaspoon dissolved Instant Coffee

Turn oven on to 170 degrees.

Make coffee for the sponge (if you don’t mind the extra washing up, make 3 coffee mixtures ready to use).

Line 2 sponge tins with non-stick baking paper (or grease the tins well).

If the butter is still a bit hard, put it in the microwave just above defrost temperature for about 30 seconds until just soft as it makes it easier to mix.

Put all the ingredients (apart from the walnuts) into a large bowl and stir well (you can cream the sugar into the soft butter first if you want, but I find it isn’t essential). 

When it is all mixed in you can stir in the walnut pieces (I break mine up quite small – each half into about 6 pieces).

Divide the mixture into the 2 sponge tins.

Pop in the oven for about 30 minutes (until they feel springy on top – but don’t test until about the 30 minutes or they will sink in the middle).

Take them out and cool on a rack (tip - keep the one with the best rounded top upwards and the other one with the top downwards on the rack, so the 2 flat parts are in the middle of the cake to ice).

Make another coffee mixture with as little hot water as possible and when cool add it to butter and icing sugar – make as much as you like for the middle of the cake.

Make and cool the last coffee mixture so it is cool to make the setting icing for the top.

When the sponges are cool, put the bottom sponge on the serving dish and spread with the butter icing and push some walnut pieces into the icing (or you can add them to the butter icing before spreading it if you prefer).

Put the other sponge on top.

Make up the icing with the last coffee mixture and add the icing sugar, adding a little bit more water to get the amount of icing you want.

Spread it over the top of the cake (and round the sides if you want). 

In my photo I made the icing a little thinner plus more than normal and let it run down the sides and on to the serving plate (spoon up over the bits it missed on the sides until all covered).

Decorate the cake with the walnut pieces (tip – don’t put them too close to the edge if the icing is still runny as they will fall off).

If you want just the basic reminder instructions, here they are:

Put all sponge ingredients in a bowl, stir, divide into 2 tins.

Pop in the oven 170 for 30 mins, then cool.

Butter ice the middle, setting icing the top.  Walnuts to decorate.

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