Coffee, chocolate & walnut cake

Coffee, chocolate & walnut cake

By
From
Sicily
Serves
8-10

We have come across hundreds of recipes in our research that use up breadcrumbs. In fact, I might just write 1,000 recipes for breadcrumbs one day! However, I hadn’t seen them used in cakes before. What a good idea! This recipe is based on one from Pina, the mother of Gregorio, the Sicilian head chef of our restaurant in Bray. It isn’t suitable for hard, dry bread, more the slightly past-their-best soft white or brown interiors of a crusty loaf. To make the breadcrumbs, simply whizz in a food processor. The original recipe uses only walnuts, but we were inspired by the dark, grainy chocolate of Modica and the shot of espresso that rounds off every meal in Italy.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
200g walnuts
50g fresh breadcrumbs from a wheat or gluten-free loaf
2 teaspoons baking powder
8 heaped teaspoons finely ground coffee
100g chocolate or carob chips
100g softened salted butter, plus extra for greasing
125g light brown muscovado sugar
4 eggs

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 170°C and generously grease a 24 cm (or similar size) loose-bottomed round cake tin with butter. Toast the walnuts on a baking tray in the oven for around 8 minutes or until they deepen in colour. Grind the walnuts in a food processor or chop by hand to a fine breadcrumb texture.
  2. Mix together the walnuts, breadcrumbs, baking powder, coffee and chocolate chips in a bowl and set aside. Whisk together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy – this should take around 5 minutes. Add the eggs one by one and keep whisking. Next, use a spatula to fold the walnut mixture into the wet ingredients until combined. Pour into the cake tin and bake for 35 minutes. Test for doneness: if a skewer or toothpick inserted into the cake comes out clean, the cake is ready. Remove from the oven and leave to cool in the tin before turning out onto a plate.
Tags:
Italy
Italian
Sicily
Sicilian
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