Mocha Hazelnut Cake

I have times when I crave a coffee cake.  I usually turn to the classic coffee and walnut in such times of need.  But I have also been coveting the notion of an Italian Hazelnut Cake.  I think it was Rachel’s blog where I first saw this, or it may have been Michele’s, or even Tracy’s.  That is the trouble when you read so many wonderful blogs, it can cause no end of trouble when you try to find a recipe that you loved.

Fortunately for me Rachel Allen does an Italian Hazelnut Cake in her book, Bake, and so with a bit of tweaking I had the perfect Coffee and Hazelnut Cake, and because it’s me I couldn’t resist adding some chocolate and turning it into a Mocha Hazelnut Cake.

I urge you to try this, it manages to be incredibly light and incredibly moist at the same time.  The coffee shines through but doesn’t diminish the wonderful hazelnut flavour and the chocolate adds a wonderful depth.  This recipe is definitely a keeper.

As I have added both coffee and hazelnuts to the original recipe, it can’t really be called an Italian Hazelnut Cake, but it can be called a Shropshire Mocha Hazelnut Cake.

200g hazelnuts, with their skins still on preferably
50g good quality chocolate
1 tsp baking powder
2tsp instant coffee powder, mixed with 2 tsp of hot water
100g softened butter
5 eggs, separated
175g caster sugar
pinch of salt


Grease and line a 20cm round cake tin.
Place the hazelnuts, chocolate and baking powder in a food processor and whizz into fine crumbs.  Add the butter and whizz again until just mixed.

In a large bowl, beat the egg yolks and the sugar together until the mixture has the texture of a mousse and the whisk leaves a trail when lifted out.

Add the coffee and the hazelnut mixture and beat until combined.

In a very clean bowl, whisk the egg whites and the pinch of salt together until stiff. Then add one-third of the egg whites to the other ingredients and stir well to combine and lighten the mixture.  Add the remaining egg whites in two batches, folding in carefully to retain as much air in the mixture as possible.

Pour the mixture into the cake tin and bake in a preheated oven at 170°c, gas mark 3, or with the oven rack on the lowest set of runners in the Baking Oven of the Aga for about 1 hour or until the cake is firm on top and a skewer will come out clean when it is inserted into the cake.

Leave to cool for 15 minutes in the tin and then turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely.



31 responses to “Mocha Hazelnut Cake

  1. Oh I so want to sink my teeth into that. MMMmmmmmmmmmmm.
    I love nuts in cakes.

  2. Your mocha hazelnut cake looks, well, PERFECT!
    🙂 Mandy

  3. I so agree with Louise, I too want to sink my teeth into that.

  4. Flavia’s tummy
    says yum yum yummy

  5. That cake looks so moist and that hazelnut flavor sounds very tasty. I have a sweet treat linky party going on at my blog until this evening called “Sweets for a Saturday” and I’d like to invite you to come by and link your cake up.

  6. Kath, that slice of cake looks wonderful – moist and chewy and delicious. I just made a mostly egg and nut cake, but didn’t use any baking powder in mine – hmmm, interesting, yours does look a bit less dense than mine (which I’m scoffing as I type).

  7. Hazelnuts are my absolute favorite, and pared with chocolate they are divine. Pop over to the World Nutella Day website to get your fill of that perfect couple.There goes my resolve to stay away from sweets for a while. Thanks so much for the shout out.

  8. Wow! perfect timing with “World Nutella Day” via Michele–

    Kath, this cake looks positively scrumptious—my kind of coffeecake, light but rich with chocolate and hazelnuts (!) the right treat with that afternoon cuppa joe.

  9. Give me 5 hours or so and pop the kettle on!!!!!! I’ll be wanting a piece of this cake when I get there too ;0)

  10. Since you blogged that the other day, I’ve been on the hunt for a nice big lump of moist cake. I can’t find one anywhere. Co-op Ginger cake would’ve done the trick; but they’d sold out. All the rest I’ve seen have been either small or had goo on the top.

    Can you please blog something with jerusalem artichokes, so my cake lust will wane.

  11. This is really a lovely creation. It looks and sounds delicious. I’m new to your blog and have spent some time browsing through your earlier entries. I really like the food and recipes you feature here. I’ll definitely be back. I hope you have a wonderful day. Blessings…Mary

  12. We made this cake on Thursday afternoon and it was all scoffed by last night! Thanks for the great recipe, this cake is really delicious and straightforward to make. I’m just going to start making your chicken pie recipe for tonight’s dinner.

  13. Yeah,…this tasty & fab looking cake is gf too so that I can thoroughly enjoy it!

    Looks stunning!!!!

  14. I followed your recipe this morning and made a delicious cake. Many thanks. But – my cupboard had brazil nuts, not hazels like I thought. I got mixture in my hair, up the walls, on the table. I also managed to get bits of egg shell mixed up with the nut mixture ….. but anyway, the cake tastes lovely.

  15. OHH MY. This has to be the best flavor combination for a dessert. Right up my ally! Thanks for sharing this!

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