Tired? Bake a Coffee Cake

If you ever have the wonderful opportunity to visit Italy, head to a local bar for a shot of espresso.  Just don’t think you’ll be sitting down to enjoy it.  It’s always consumed very quickly standing at the bar.

Personally, I would rather enjoy the intense aroma of a hot-shot of coffee slowly, as I tuck into a biscuit or a slice of cake.   It’s the little moments that make life that much more satisfying; don’t you think?

My coffee cake recipe has just the right amount of sweetness to balance the bitterness of the beans.  First of all I would like to mention a few things about our reliance on coffee’s powers over tiredness.

I completely understand why the majority of hard-working businessmen and women drink it all day everyday to keep them functioning through their hectic daily schedule, but, why do it so close to bed time?

After watching my Italian father over many years my conclusion comes down to two factors:

  • A person finds the taste absolutely irresistible
  • Classic signs of addiction.

“Do we really drink coffee out of choice?” 

Think about that for a moment.  Is the world we live in so fast paced we are subconsciously forcing ourselves to stay awake?  Or, has caffeine simply got us hooked?  I’ll leave that for you to decide.  Whatever the case may be, coffee is here to stay!

So the big question is,

Coffee cake recipe ¦ Serves 6 ¦ Cooking time: 35-40 minutes


6 oz / 170 g – self-raising flour

6 oz / 170 g – caster sugar

6 oz / 170 g – softened butter

4 – free range eggs

1 tsp – baking powder

2 tbsp – espresso

Icing Sugar:

3 oz / 85 g – softened butter

3 oz / 85 g – icing sugar

1 tbsp – espresso


Use an electric mixer.  In a mixing bowl beat the butter until soft and fluffy.  Add the sugar and continue mixing for a further 2 minutes.

Add an egg and mix for 30 seconds one at a time.  Once all eggs have been added mix for a further 3 minutes.

Sieve the flour and add it to the mixture.  Mix for 5 minutes (timing is important so don’t skimp on this part).   Add the baking powder mixing for 30 seconds.

In a greased 20 cm tin pour the mixture and place in the center of a preheated oven at 170°C (Fan) for 35-40 minutes.  Ensure the cake has cooked all the way through by prodding it with a toothpick in its center.  If it comes out clean it’s done!

Method for Icing Sugar: 

Soften the butter and mix until fluffy.  Add the sugar mixing until fully incorporated.  Add the coffee to the mixture after allowing it to cool down.  Mix for 1 minute.  Add some chopped roasted chestnuts or toasted almonds for decoration.

There is some research out there suggestion those who converse over a hot cup of coffee build subconscious emotional ties to one another.  I’m not quite convinced.  Surely, just taking time to chat to someone in warm surroundings without any real pressure from outside sources leads to that outcome; and not the hot coffee?  What do you think?  Leave your comments.


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