Coffee Cake with Pecan Brittle

Serves 8-10

For the cake

225g/8oz unsalted butter, softened

225g/8oz light muscavado sugar

4 large eggs, beaten

225g/8oz self raising flour

1tsp baking powder

2tbsp instant espresso coffee, mixed with 2 tbsp boiling water

For the brittle

100g/4oz granulated sugar

3 tbsp water

75g/3oz pecans

For the coffee filling

150ml/5floz double cream

75g/3oz golden icing sugar

½ tbsp instant espresso coffee mixed with ½ tbsp boiling water

For the coffee buttercream

140g/5oz golden icing sugar

100g/4oz unsalted butter, softened

1tbsp instant espresso coffee mixed with 1 tbsp boiling water

For mocha chocolate drizzle

1 tsp instant espresso coffee mixed with 1 tsp boiling water

4-5 squares of dark choc approx 20g

1-2 tbsp golden icing sugar

 

Method

Heat the oven to 180c/fan 160/ gas 4. Grease and line the base of 2 x 20cm/8in sandwich tins with baking parchment. Place all the ingredients for the cake in a food mixer and beat until well blended. Divide the mixture between the two tins (approx 445g in each)and place on the middle shelf of the oven for 20-25 mins or until a skewer comes out clean. Allow to cool for 10 mins, then transfer to a wire rack to cool

Next make the brittle: prepare a baking sheet with a piece of baking parchment on top. Place the sugar and water in a heavy based pan over a medium heat and gently swirl (don’t stir so it cooks evenly until it reaches a golden colour. Remove from the heat and add the pecans. Pour the mixture evenly over the baking sheet and leave to cool.

Make the coffee cream filling simple by whisking the double cream and sugar until fairly firm and then folding in the coffee. For the butter cream, beat the butter and sugar together and then gradually add the coffee. Thickly spread the cream filling over one of the cakes, place the other cake on top and using a palette knife smooth the butter cream over the top. (Dip the palette knife in boiling water to get an ultra smooth finish.

For the drizzle, melt the chocolate and coffee together and then add the icing sugar a little at a time until you get a piping consistency. Place in a piping bag and snip off a small opening. Holding the piping bag above the cake pipe squiggles of dark icing all over the cake.

Finally break the pecan brittle into 2cm irregular pieces and place round the top of the cake.

 

To get a head; the cake can be kept for up to 2 days

 

To freeze the un-iced sponge can be made up to 1 month ahead.

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