Coffee and Walnut Cake – Mary Berry Baking Bible

Jon loves coffee and walnut cake but don’t remember ever making one. No idea why not as it’s really not much more effort than a basic Victoria sponge and I even have coffee essence in the larder. I think it must be because until I started this challenge to start working through my recipe books I was having difficulty moving outside of my comfort zone. So it was time I tried one and where better to start than with one from Mary Berry’s Baking Bible. My sandwich tins are 20.5cm/8in whereas Mary’s recipe calls for 18cm/7in sandwich tins. I very obviously didn’t have enough cake mix so I added 1/2 as much again for all the ingredients. My quantities in brackets. Surprisingly though my cakes were very definitely ready when I checked them after 40 minutes and should probably have come out of the oven 2-3 minutes earlier. With the right quantity mixture I’d be looking at baking for about 30-35 minutes.

Taste is perfect coffee and walnut cake, texture just very slightly on the dry side (I knew i should have removed the cake just a few minutes earlier).

Ingredients for the cake

  • 100g/4oz (150g) soft butter
  • 100g/4oz (150g) caster sugar
  • 2 (3) large free-range eggs
  • 100g/4oz (150g) self-rasing flour
  • 1 (1.5) tsp baking powder
  • 50g/2oz (75g) chopped walnuts
  • 1 (1.5) tbsp coffee essence

Ingredients for the filling and topping

  • 75g/3oz (110g) butter, softened
  • 225g/8oz (345g) icing sugar, sifted
  • 2 (3) tsp milk
  • 2 (3) tsp coffee essence
  • 8 (12) walnut halves, to decorate


  1. For the cake, preheat the oven to 180C/350F/Gas 4. Grease and line the bases of two 18cm/7in diameter sandwich tins with baking parchment.
  2. Beat together all the cake ingredients in a large bowl with an electric hand whisk until well combined and smooth.
  3. Divide the mixture between the cake tins and gently spread out with a spatula.
  4. Bake for 20-25 minutes until an inserted skewer comes out clean.
  5. Allow to stand for five minutes before turning onto a wire rack to cool. Peel off the parchment paper.
  6. For the filling and topping, beat the butter and gradually add the icing sugar. When all the icing sugar is added, add the milk and coffee essence and beat until smooth.
  7. When the cakes have cooled, spread half the coffee icing on one cake and sandwich together with the other half Ice the top of the cake with the remaining coffee icing and decorate with walnut pieces.


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