Sunday, 6 January 2008

Soured cream and hazelnut crumble cake

After the excesses of Christmas I felt it was time for a simple cake; one that didn’t need a side serving of cream and wasn’t smothered in, admittedly delicious, buttercream. A sort of ‘detox’ cake (Disclaimer: the owner of the site makes no health claims about this cake)

This is an interesting cake (aren’t they all.....sigh) as the actual cake part of the mix isn’t very sweet. However, the crumble part is and so an interesting contrast is created. The cake is seriously succulent:

One thing I would say, I followed the recipe and made the cake in a 23cm square tin. Next time I think I’ll make it in a 20cm square tin to get it a bit deeper. I’m not mad about shallow cakes and would rather have a smaller, but more cube-like, shape.

The slice just glistens with juicy goodness:

For the crumble element:
225g dark brown sugar
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
115g finely chopped hazelnuts (you could also use walnuts)
55g unsalted butter, cold and cut into pieces

For the cake:
115g unsalted butter, at room temperature
125g caster sugar
3 eggs
215g plain flour
1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
250ml soured cream
Optional: dash of vanilla

How to make:

- Preheat the oven to 180°C/fan oven 160°C/350°F/Gas mark 4.
- Grease and line a 23cm square tin or a 20cm square tin if you prefer a deeper (albeit smaller) cake.
- For the topping mix the brown sugar, nuts and cinnamon together and then rub in the butter. It won’t go to breadcrumb consistency but rub until you sense the butter has been evenly distributed among the dry ingredients. Put to one side.
- To make the cake, cream the butter and sugar together either in a mixer or by hand. Cream until the mixture turns pale and looks fluffy.
- Beat in the eggs one at a time. The mix may start to curdle but it will not affect the outcome. If it bothers you add a little of the flour to stop it (NB. Add the flour from the recipe’s allocation – not extra flour!)
- In a separate bowl, combine the flour, bicarbonate of soda and baking powder.
- Fold one third of the flour mix into the creamed butter and egg mix. Then fold in one third of the soured cream. Continue to alternate until all the flour and soured cream is incorporated.
- Spoon half the batter into the cake tin. Sprinkle half of the crumble mix on top of this.
- Spoon the remaining batter onto the crumble mix and gently spread so that no crumble is visible. Sprinkle the remaining crumble mix on top of the cake.
- Bake until a skewer comes out clean. This will take somewhere between 60-70 minutes. Mine took exactly 60 minutes. If you make the cake in the smaller tin it may take a little longer as the mix will be deeper.
- Let the cake cool for 15 minutes or so in the tin, before turning out and letting cool completely on a wire rack.
- Bask in glory at the wonderful thing you have made.
- Eat.


Soo said...


glamah16 said...

I agree. I love hazelnuts.