Being a very busy mum their are a few things which help me through the week - one is wine (cold cold cold), a glass on a Friday to cheers to myself to make it to the end of the week!! Boom boom. The other thing which helps me be the mum that I am - caffeine. I like my caffeine in various forms - tea, coffee and diet coke. So when the team at Lavazza offered to send me some of their new Prontissimo Instant coffee - I fired of the that email saying yes please ASAP!! This coffee is fantastic as instant cup. Lots of flavour, dissolves well (not leaving that chalky feeling) and the Medio option is smooth enough to drink blank and give me that hit!
Spending time in the kitchen is another "thing" which helps me relax, focus and unwind - baking is something I find (mostly) therapeutic and have mastered the art of whipping a cake while cooking dinner and washing up! Its a skill (not sure how I would word that one on the CV though!). I had a hankering for cake - and coffee cake was the answer. My baking cupboard is running low on nuts (make a mental note to stock up..) so off to the cookbook library to find a recipe. I stumbled across this Madeira cake variation in Rachel Allen's Home Cooking - which the recipe in its original form uses coffee essence (I had none of this either) but instead I opted this out and made a coffee paste with the Prontissimo. The results were thumbs up. Luckily I baked it as well as my brother in law popped round and it so happened to be his birthday - but I could only find a number two candle. Fail.
I did also top this cake with a chocolate fudgy icing (which being a bad social media user forgot to take a picture) which was super quick and balanced well with the slightly bitter cake.
- 100g of dark chocolate. (I use supermarket value dark chocolate mostly and it works fine)
- About 50g of butter (it was the leftover of a block in the fridge)
- about 100g of icing sugar (I basically poured into the pot and mixed it until it looked right)
Melt the chocolate and butter in a heavy based pan on a low heat until molten. Remove from the heat and whisk in the sugar until combined. It was like Nutella consistency. I spread on top of the cake once the cake was cooled. The mix of chocolate and coffee is a classic and will always be a winner.
Coffee Maderia cake.
- 175g stork margarine or softened unsalted butter
- 175g caster sugar
- 1 tsp of vanilla extract
- 3 eggs
- 225g plain flour
- 1tsp baking powder
- 1 heaped tablespoon of instant coffee mixed with enough boiling water to make a paste.
- Heat the oven to 170c. Mix butter until soft.
- Add sugar and vanilla and beat until fluffly
- Add eggs one at a time and beat well.
- Fold in the flour, baking powder and coffee paste.
- Once combined tip into a lined loaf tin and bake for about an hour until a skewer comes out clean.
Happy baking - let me know how you get on.