20 October 2011

Hazelnut cake - 'Nusskuchen'

This is a very simple sponge cake and I can’t really think of any interesting facts or anecdotes to go with it. It is just a classic and very popular recipe that I have already liked as a child and I still love now. The combination of roasted hazelnuts and a dash of brandy is a winner and absolutely delicious. This is another one of those things that I like for breakfast (yes, I like my breakfasts and no, I see nothing wrong with eating cake first thing in the morning). For this reason I tend to leave the cake plain as in the picture and I do not cover it with a nice milk-chocolate icing, which also makes a very good match. The cake is light and moist and keeps fresh for about a week in a tin. All ingredients should be at room temperature before the baking commences. I like baking this in a large loaf tin, but two smaller tins and other shapes also work.

 250g butter
200g sugar
Seeds from one vanilla pod
4 eggs
1 large dash of brandy
350g plain flour
2 heaped teaspoons baking powder
200g roasted hazelnuts, ground
150 ml milk

Whisk the butter, sugar and vanilla for several minutes until light and fluffy. Add the eggs one by one and continue whisking. Add the brandy. Mix the flour, baking powder and hazelnuts. Alternate adding portions of the flour and the milk to the whisked butter and eggs. Combine well, but do not overwork the batter. Pour into a greased tin and bake at 180 degrees for about an hour.

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