Roberto, my husband's Italian friend is from Capri and gets us this lovely chocolate mocha nut cake from his home town every time he goes there on vacation. It is beautifully packed in the bakery's green gift wrap. The cake is packed on a hard golden scalloped cardboard base with a hard plastic cover that keeps it intact and moist. My daughter and I can't wait to unwrap it when my husband brings it home. The first bite takes you to chocolate heaven. The cake is chocolatey, nutty and with a hint of coffee, just melts in your mouth. Roby has been getting us this cake about twice a year for five years now. So it was time to decode the ingredients and try something on my own that we could enjoy whenever we wanted it.
I then found this recipe in one of the BBC GoodFood magazine few years ago which had chocolate, ground nuts and coffee in the ingredients. It looked as scrumptious as Roby's cake. So I did make it not only once but I have made this many times - as a dessert for a party, when I had guest over, when I had my girlfriends over, for birthday parties, when my in laws were over. In short every time I craved it, I made it. This is an acceptable alternative to what Roby brings from Italy.
I have had a lot of request from my girl friends and my sister in law (who loves to bake) to share the recipe. I have procrastinated but I am finally posting it. So here it is - this one is for you, A.S.A, for being very patient with me for the past few years. Also, a big thank you to Roberto for introducing this fantastic cake.
The cake from Capri
Also, this cake is perfect if you want to impress certain someone in your life. It is perfect to set a romantic mood. Happy Valentines day in advance.
- 200g/8 oz Almond meal
- 200g/8 oz Good quality semi sweet chocolate, roughly chopped
- 200g/8 oz Unsalted butter, softened
- 200g/8 oz Caster sugar
- 4 Eggs, seperated
- 2 tsp Instant coffee granules
- 100g/4 oz Cornflour
- Cocoa powder, for dusting
Lightly grease a 20 cm, loose based round cake tin. Heat oven to 180C/350F.
Put chocolate in a microwave dish and microwave for 2 minutes, stirring after a minute. Or melt over a pan of simmering water.
Cream butter and sugar until pale and fluffy. Beat in egg yolks one at a time. Stir in the almond meal, chocolate, coffee and cornflour.
Whisk egg whites to soft peaks. Fold a quarter of the egg whites into the chocolate mix, then gradually fold in the remainder. Pour the mix into a prepared tin and bake for 45 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean. Check after 35 minutes and if the cake is browning, cover with grease proof paper and continue to cook.
Allow the cake to cool completely before removing from the tin. Dust with cocoa powder and serve.
Note: You could use hazelnut meal instead of almond meal. You could also blanch hazelnut/almonds and put it in a food processor and pulse until finely chopped.