Throwback Thursday: Rich coffee caramel cake

Throwback Thursday: Rich coffee caramel cake
Tony Jackman’s rich coffee caramel cake. (Photo: Tony Jackman)

A slice of coffee cake with, what else, a cup of strong coffee, is as decadent as a mid-morning treat gets.

Coffee cakes are a feature of various cuisines, and are often served with morning or afternoon coffee or, sometimes, with tea. The joy that is java gives a cake a fabulous hit of intense flavour and there will be many, I suspect, who would agree with me that after chocolate cake, coffee cake is next in the popularity stakes.

In parts of Europe there’s the famous Bundt cake, which in turn derives from the Gugelhupf cake, both being made in what we now call a Bundt cake tin, round and with a hole in the middle of the cake, like a very large doughnut. Coffee cakes are traditional in America too, often with a topping of coffee butter cream, which is what I used for my own recipe, below.

Coffee cake can be given the chocolate cake treatment, by which I mean this: you know that quest for the ultimate chocolate cake, the one that is just so moist and deeply delicious that no other chocolate cake will ever be good enough anymore? That cake. Only, made with coffee.

This, then, is a coffee caramel cake, and there is an element of chocolate in it in the form of caramel chocolate. The coffee in it is super strong, and this recipe is an adaptation of my rich, dark chocolate cake which was one of my recipes of the year in 2022.

(Makes 1 large cake)


255 g butter, at room temperature

255 g caramel chocolate, broken into small pieces

125 ml coffee made with 4 heaped tsp coffee granules

170 g cake flour

10 ml baking powder

¼ tsp bicarbonate of soda

200 g treacle sugar

100 g brown sugar

3 large eggs, at room temperature

80 ml/ ⅓ cup buttermilk

For the coffee butter cream:

250 g butter at room temperature

500 g icing sugar

3 Tbsp cold strong coffee


Preheat the oven to 160℃. 

Grease a deep 20 cm round springform cake tin with butter and line with greaseproof paper.

In a stainless steel pot over a slightly bigger pot filled ⅓ way up with water, melt together 255 g butter with 255 g caramel chocolate, broken up, on a gentle heat. The water should not bubble. Stir with a wooden spoon while it melts and combines.

Stir 4 heaped tsp coffee granules into 125 ml boiled water and let it cool. Stir it into the melted caramel chocolate and butter.

Still on a low heat, stir while it heats through and melds. Turn off the heat.

Sift the flour into a large baking bowl with the baking powder and bicarbonate of soda, and stir in the treacle sugar and brown sugar. Work out the lumps with a wooden spoon and/or a strong whisk.

In a small bowl, whisk the eggs into the buttermilk and beat this, using a wooden spoon, into the dry mixture along with the caramel mixture from the pot. Beat until smooth and somewhat runny, but don’t overwork it.

Pour into the lined 20 cm springform cake tin and bake in the 160℃ oven for about 90 minutes or until an inserted skewer in the centre comes out clean.

Remove to a wire rack but let it cool in the tin before releasing the springform tin’s catch.

For the butter cream icing, pour the measured icing sugar into a bowl. Add the soft butter and work it with a wooden spoon. When it is fairly well combined, beat in the cold coffee.

Spoon it onto the top of the cake and spread it with a palette knife or back of a spoon, dipped in hot water. Dust the top with cocoa, shaken from a small sieve DM/TGIFood

Follow Tony Jackman on Instagram @tony_jackman_cooks.


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