This is an old recipe my mum used to use when she was a cookery demonstrator in the sixties*. It was a particular favourite with the ladies who came to watch the demonstrations. It would make an appearance as weekend pudding throughout my childhood. I forgot all about it for years until the other day when something, I don't know what, reminded me of it. Mum has lost the original recipe but it turned out to be very easy to recreate.
It is simply a plain cake doused with coffee and covered in whipped cream. Moist and rich but much less sweet than a cake covered with icing.
I think that my mum and her colleagues would have made sure that every inch of the cake was soaked with coffee. As you can see there are patches in my cake where the coffee has not penetrated. I considered making a second cake and attempting perfection but as this is the cake my family ate with much enjoyment I decided that it was perfect enough.
Coffee Cream Cake
Grease and line the base of an 8 inch (20cm) deep cake tin
Put the following ingredients in a mixing bowl and beat well
6oz (170g) self-raising flour,
6oz (170g) soft butter
6oz (170g) caster sugar
1½ teaspoons baking powder
Pour the mixture into the prepared tin and bake at 180°c (160°c fan oven) for 35-40 minutes.
Leave the cake to cool in the tin for until it is cool enough for you to invert it onto a plate. This will give you a nice flat surface to spread the cream on, it's not essential though.
Make about 5 fl oz (150ml) of coffee. I used instant coffee and cold water, mum says the original recipe used Camp Coffee Essence which I think would have been sweetened.
Pour the coffee gradually over the cake. Tilting the plate will help the coffee penetrate every part of the cake. As you pour it's a good idea to carefully lift the edges of the cake to see if the coffee has begun to seep out of the cake. If it has, then you probably have enough coffee in your cake.
Next whip up about 7 fl oz (200ml) double cream and spread all over the top and sides of the cake. Store in the fridge until you're ready to eat it. Leftovers must also be stored in the fridge and eaten up fairly quickly because of the cream.
The cake without the coffee and cream will freeze well making it handy for emergency Can't Be Arsed puddings (see previous post), just make sure you have some cream and coffee around.
I haven't tried it but I think there's probably room for alcohol in this cake -a splash of Tia Maria or rum with the coffee.
A mocha version. I haven't tried this either but I think it would be good. Make a simple chocolate cake with cocoa and proceed as above. Some grated chocolate sprinkled over the cream perhaps.
* A job which involved showing housewives how to use electric cookers and other appliances and also occasionally skivvying for the likes of Fanny Cradock (a bitch by all accounts), Marguerite Patten and Mary Berry (both very nice).