Friday, 2 September 2016

Coffee and Walnut Tray Bake with Vanilla Latte Icing

The return each year of The Great British Bake Off inspires me, plus half the nation to don our aprons and bake, and this is my offering this week.

Despite it being biscuit week, I didn't have all the ingredients (or the time) to attempt viennesse whirls on Wednesday post-GBBO, so I turned to ingredients I always have on stand by and made this Coffee and Walnut Tray Bake - a recipe from Mary Berry's Baking Bible and just added the simple flourish of a teaspoon and a half of good quality vanilla (Nielsen Massey) to make the Vanilla Latte icing. I also didn't have coffee essence so used my trusty Nescafe Azera instead and it worked just as well.

Coffee and Walnut Tray Bake with Vanilla Latte Icing

Here's how:
  • 225g softened butter (I use salted)
  • 225g light muscovado sugar
  • 275g self raising flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 4 large eggs
  • 2 tbsp neat made up coffee (I use Nescafe Azera) or can use 2 tsp coffee essence
  • 2 tbsp milk
  • 75-100g roughly chopped walnuts
  • 75g softened butter
  • 225g icing sugar
  • 1.5 tsp good quality vanilla essence (I use Nielson Massey)
  • 1 tbsp coffee (as above)
  • 1 tbsp milk

To decorate:
  • A few walnut pieces

Firstly pre-heat the oven to 180 and grease and line your preferred baking tin or dish with greaseproof paper.

In a large bowl mix all of the dry ingredients and mix, then everything else and mix well with a wooden spoon until you have a lovely coffee coloured, fully combined cake batter.

Pour into the tin and move around so it's as even as you can get it.

Bake for 30-35 minutes, or until golden brown and well risen. Test it's done by pressing down gently with a fingertip, it should bounce back if cooked through and be light and springy. You can also use a skewer to pierce the cake in the centre and make sure it comes out dry and not still wet.

Leave in the tin for ten minutes to cool slightly, then turn out onto a cooling tray and leave for a further 20-30 minutes to avoid curdling the icing.

When ready to make the icing, place the icing sugar, butter, vanilla essence and coffee into a bowl and mix with a wooden spoon until combined. Add the milk a drop at a time until you are happy with the icing consistency, it should have a little texture but be easy enough to spread over the cake.

Place the tray bake on a board or large plate, and gently peel down the sides of the greaseproof paper so the icing has room to run down the edges of the cake a bit.

Now use a palette knife, or the back of a metal spoon, to spread over the icing until it is evenly distributed. Leave to stand for five minutes.

Place a line of four walnuts down the centre, lengthways, of the tray bake which will help you portion up. Press down very gently when placing them on.

Now use a sharp knife to cut into similar sized portions - I find cutting straight through the middle then halving works well. Once portioned up, place a walnut piece into the centre of each piece of cake and serve immediately with a cup of tea. Enjoy!

No comments:

Post a Comment