As much as I like the idea of drinking coffee, I just find it so ghastly! I'm sorry if this offends any of my coffee fueled cohorts but what can I say, I'm a leaf tea gentleman through and through! Coffee cake though? Well that is a whole other story indeed. I LOVE it! I guess it just goes to proves that one can stomach even the most unpalatable things if they are turned into a dirty great cake!
Prep time: 30 Mins (Plus some soaking time)
Baking time: 50-60 Mins
For the Cake
175g Unsalted Butter (Softened)
185g Golden Caster Sugar
3 Large Eggs
1tsp Vanilla Extract
215g Self Raising Flour
1tsp Baking Powder
75g Toasted Hazelnuts (Chopped)
1tbsp Cocoa Powder
For the Syrup
100ml Cold Water
100g Caster Sugar
3tbsp Strong Black Coffee
For the Vanilla Cream
250ml Double Cream
2tbsp Golden Caster Sugar
1/2tsp Vanilla Extract
25g Toasted Hazelnuts (Chopped)
16-24 Chocolate Covered Coffee Beans
Let us begin! Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/Gas 4, grease a 20cm deep, loose bottomed baking tin and line the base with baking paper. In a large mixing bowl cream together the butter and sugar, then beat in the eggs one at a time along with the vanilla extract. In a separate bowl sift in the flour and baking powder, then gently mix through the hazelnuts and cocoa powder. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, along with a tablespoon of milk and mix to a lovely consistent batter. Pour into your prepared tin, even to the edges and bake in the centre of the oven for around 50-60 minutes, until a metal skewer comes out clean when inserted into the middle of the cake.
When the cake is nearly done you can start on the syrup. Add the water and caster sugar to a small saucepan and gently stir on a medium heat. Once the sugar has dissolved turn the heat up and boil for about 3 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir through the coffee and rum.
Once the cake is done remove from the oven and whilst still hot, prick all over with a sharp knife or skewer. Carefully spoon over some of the hot syrup, leave to soak in for around 10 minutes, then repeat. Keep doing this until you have used all the syrup. You want the top to be completely sodden with syrup! Leave the soaked cake to cool completely in the tin.
Once the cake is cool carefully remove from the tin, then you can start on the cream. In a clean bowl pour in the double cream and add the sugar. Whisk until thick, then gently fold through the vanilla. Carefully spread over the top of your cake and level to the edges, then finish with a sprinkling of hazelnuts and a handful of chocolate covered cocoa beans. Your work is done!