Coffee and Walnut Cake

Serves 10 - 12

for the Cake
125g gluten-free plain flour
65g gluten-free oat flour
1 heaped tsp gluten-free baking powder
60g walnuts, ground to a powder using a food processor
250g dairy-free margarine
250g unrefined caster sugar
5 med eggs
30ml/ 2 tablespoon coffee granules, diluted with a tiny amount of boiling water
100g walnuts

for the Filling and Topping
30g apricot jam
150g dairy free margarine
600g icing sugar
3 tablespoons coffee granules, diluted with a little boiling water

Preheat oven to 190°c /170°c fan oven / 375°f / gas mark 5.
Grease and line two 8in / 20cm round cake tins with greaseproof paper.

Place the walnuts into a food processor and blend to a powder. Add the gluten-free plain flour, gluten-free oat flour and gluten-free baking powder and blend together to evenly distribute the baking powder.

Cream the dairy-free margarine and sugar together.

Crack the eggs into a bowl and beat lightly, beat into the creamed mixture a little at a time. The mixture will probably split but will come together with the flour.

Fold in the flour.

Dissolve the coffee granules with a small amount of boiling water and fold into the mixture with the walnut pieces.

Divide between the two tins and bake for 20 to 30 minutes until a knife inserted comes out clean.

Leave to cool in the tin for 15 minutes before turning out onto a plate, turn this onto the cooling wire so the cake cools the right way up or it could break in half.

Mix the icing sugar into the dairy-free margarine, a little at a time. Do not overbeat the mixture or it may split. Dissolve the coffee granules in a small amount of boiling water and mix into the buttercream.
This is a lot of icing sugar. If you use less icing sugar to margarine, the mixture may split. Add a little extra flavouring to this buttercream. *see note.

When the sponges have cooled, place one sponge onto a plate. Spread apricot jam over the base with 1/3 buttercream.
Place the second sponge on top.
Decorate the top and sides of the cake with the remaining buttercream.
Decorate the top of the cake with walnut halves.

In all recipes requiring self-raising gluten-free flour, I advise stirring the flours together with the gluten-free baking powder then sift at least twice to fully distribute the baking powder. Alternatively blend together in a food processor.

Gluten free cakes are crumblier than other cakes but taste just as good. To cut neat slices, dip a serrated knife in hot water and wipe clean between slices.

You can make your own gluten-free oat flour by blending gluten-free oats in a food processor until fine. This may not turn out as fine as shop bought but is not as expensive.

For dairy-free buttercream: Most dairy-free margarine is quite soft. You will need to add four times as much icing sugar to the dairy-free margarine or it will split. I like to use Naturli block margarine as it is a firmer margarine. You only need twice as much icing sugar to this block margarine. It is a lot tastier and doesn’t contain palm oil.