Yesterday, I succumbed to my urge...
...and baked - even though I really should have been hard at work meeting my deadlines. Well I really couldn't help it.
You see, sometimes when I face a mind block and just simply cannot concentrate, I find that it helps if I rest my mind and do something else.
Hmmm.. okay or maybe that's just a lame excuse for me to bake. haha.
It's not my fault! My hands were simply itching to bake something yum. In fact, I had a recipe that I've been dying to use - just that I haven't got the time of late.
So I finally got down to it and baked that cake you see above and I loved the result. My family liked it and so did JF. And here's a virtual slice for you my dear reader:
This cake is rather different from the ones I usually bake. Due to the grounded almonds, the cake had a loose texture which made it crumbly and really nutty. Perfect for nut-lovers. The fact that it was combined with wholemeal plain flour just made it even yummy. As a wheat/multigrain/wholemeal lover, I have to say that this cake really made my day. The nutty undertones of the wholemeal totally melded with the almonds and chocolate.
I gotta admit that I ate quite a bit of the cake! Perhaps it's because of the fact that it's not as sinful. But you know what; despite it being quite healthy, it really tasted good. The dark chocolate did the trick.
The original recipe called for hazelnuts but I had none at hand so I used almonds instead. To make it more chocolatey, I added in some cocoa powder. As usual, I cut down the sugar. Ended up using only 180g of sugar - and that worked out fine for me because I don't like my chocolate cake too sweet because it would overpower the chocolate taste.
I love this recipe and I think it's a great recipe to try out if you want to play around with your ingredients. This is a recipe from Nigel Slater but I can't remember which blog I got it from. Well anyhow, I'm glad I copied it into my computer!
Oh, before I go, here's an extra tip the recipe includes: you can add orange zest or finely chopped fruit like dried apricots or prunes. Also, walnuts and almonds work fine, if you don't have hazelnuts!
Man, I should make another one with hazelnuts. Chocolate and hazelnuts - a divine combination. Just think Nutella! Heh... you know what, I think I will add some nutella in the cake batter the next time I bake it. Nothing goes wrong with Nutella, trust me :)
Wholemeal Chocolate, Hazelnut & Coffee cake
an adapted recipe from Nigel Slater's Appetite - p.438.
250g butter (1 block)
125g soft brown sugar
125g white or raw sugar (feel free to play with these sugar amounts)
4 large eggs
3-4 tablespoons strong espresso coffee
250g wholemeal plain flour
2 heaped teaspoons baking powder
200g skinned hazelnuts, coarsely ground (I used almonds)
250g good, dark chocolate - coarsely chopped (it should look like gravel)
23cm springform cake tin or a normal cake tin.
Line the tin with greaseproof paper and set the oven to 180C.
Cream the butter and sugars until fluffy and pale.
Add in eggs one at a time, beating lightly between each addition. Don't worry if the mixture curdles. Stir in the coffee.
Add the flour and baking powder and fold them in. Now fold in most of the hazelnuts and chopped chocolate, keeping a little back for the top of the cake. The mixture should be quite firm.
Spoon the batter into the lined tin and smooth the top. Scatter over the remaining hazelnuts and nuts
Bake for about 1h 20 minutes or until the cake is springy. Test it with a skewer - it should come out clean.
Let cool for 30 minutes before cutting. This cake is best served warm.