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Have you noticed how hard it is to find a good coffee cake these days? I’ve been craving coffee cake for weeks now and finally decided to hunt in my collection of cookbooks for a good recipe. Today, I found one that is moist, flavorful and goes perfectly with, well… coffee!

Silverton Chocolate Coffee Cake

3/4 cup freshly brewed espresso or 2 tablespoons instant coffee powder dissolved in 3/4 cup boiling water

4 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped

2 tablespoons instant coffee powder

6 tablespoons unsalted butter

3 eggs, separated and at room temperature

1/2 cup organic granulated sugar (or natural sweetener of your choice)

3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons hazelnuts, toasted and peeled

6 tablespoons all-purpose flour

2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder

1 egg white

pinch of salt

powdered sugar for dusting

Preheat oven to 350 degrees (F). Lightly grease the bottom and sides of a 9-inch round cake pan. Line the bottom with a round of parchment paper or waxed paper. Grease the paper and set aside.

In a saucepan over low heat, combine the brewed espresso, chocolate, coffee powder and butter, stirring occasionally until melted. Set aside to cool.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the egg yolks and sugar together until pale and fluffy. Slowly whisk the chocolate mixture into the egg mixture until well blended.

In a food processor (or large mortar and pestle), process the 3/4 cup of toasted hazelnuts until finely chopped, about 20 seconds. Add the flour and cocoa and process for 10 more seconds. Measure out 1 cup of the chocolate batter. With the machine running, gradually add the mixture to the food processor through the feed tube to form a paste. Stir the paste back into the batter and beat until well blended.

In a large bowl, beat the 4 egg whites with the salt until stiff, glossy peaks form. Whisk about one-quarter of the beaten whites into the batter. Using a rubber spatula, fold in the remaining whites until blended. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake until firm, about 30 minutes. A toothpick inserted into the center should come out slightly sticky. Transfer the pan to a wire rack and let the cake cool. Unmold, remove the parchment paper and place the cake on a plate. Chop the remaining 2 tablespoons of hazelnuts and sprinkle in the cake along with the powdered sugar. Enjoy!


Perry, S. (2001). The New Complete Coffee Book: A Gourmet Guide to Buying, Brewing, and Cooking. Vancouver, BC: Raincoast Books.