One of my favourite things is a cup of scalding hot, delicious coffee, the type you could inhale all day, and a slice of buttery, indulgent coffee cake. This recipe is one I make based on two of my favourites from the queens of baking, Darina Allen in Ballymaloe and Mary Berry. I leave out walnuts because I can’t bear them, but like to decorate with pecans.
Coffee cake with mascarpone icing
250g real butter, softened
300g self-raising flour
4 eggs, beaten
250g light soft brown sugar (Or I like to use 100g dark muscovado sugar and 150g caster sugar)
1 tsp real vanilla extract
200ml of very strong coffee, (real or instant) cooled
For the mascarpone icing
500g icing sugar
Cooled, sweetened coffee to taste
Cocoa powder to decorate
Pecan nuts to decorate (optional)
Preheat oven to 180C or Gas mark 4.
Butter 2 x 20cm sandwich tins and line the bottoms with greaseproof paper.
Beat the butter and sugar together until light, pale and creamy. Add the vanilla extract. Add in the sieved flour and the beaten eggs and continue beating until throughly mixed. Fold in half of the cold coffee.Divide the mix evenly between the two tins and bake for 25-30 minutes until golden and well risen.
After removing from the oven, leave the cakes to stand in their tins for about five minutes before turning them out on a wire rack. Mix a little icing sugar with the cold coffee and sprinkle over 3-4 tablespoons on the sponges. Leave to cool.
For the icing, beat together the icing sugar, the mascarpone and some of the sweetened cold coffee (to your own preference).
Spread a layer of the icing to sandwich the sponges together and spread the rest on top. It will be quite runny and naturally fall over the sides. Decorate with pecans, if using, and with a dusting of cocoa powder.
It will happily keep for 2-3 days.
Now put the kettle on and enjoy!