Recipe: coffee cake with walnuts

If you have a nut tree in your garden, you have a mountain of nuts every year that you can make all kinds of tasty things from. Well, I don't really like walnuts myself, so I thought it would be nice to find something that I like and where you can still use those walnuts. They are healthy and they fall from the tree for free. So it's a shame not to participate.

The walnuts

I thought you always had to dry walnuts first. It takes time. So first asked Ruud van Moestuinadvies if there isn't a faster method for this. As it turns out, you can eat them right away. Allowing to dry first is only necessary if you want to store them. Tried immediately. I actually like them even better than dried. They are a bit sweeter, it seems. Although: even with fresh walnuts, the shells taste a bit bitter. It gives you that astringent mouthfeel, just like strong Assam tea.

Opening it is also still a job. But it's easier if you boil them for 5 minutes. Then pry them open with a kitchen knife. Don't prick your fingers! And when removing the nut from the bark, it appears that the husks partially come off. Saves some bitterness.

The fresh walnuts are not as crunchy as the dried ones and you just want that crunch. So I gently dried them in a dry frying pan over a low heat. The heat releases even more flavor.

The cake

For this cake (or pie) I took a recipe from Mary Berry as a starting point. But I put my own spin on it. Mary Berry suggests making a buttercream from butter and sugar for filling and decoration. I chose to use Robèrt van Beckhoven's butter cream. It's a little less greasy. Moreover, because of the custard that is used in it, the cream tastes deliciously like vanilla.

I also missed a sour in the cake. So there is a small layer of orange marmalade. Gives just a little extra freshness. Hope you like it!


This creamy cake is made extra tasty by the crunchy walnuts. The taste of nuts also combines well with coffee, of course. The orange marmalade gives the cake just a little bit of freshness, making it nicely balanced.


For the cake

  • 100 grams of butter at room temperature
  • 100 grams of sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 100 grams of self-raising flour
  • 1 level teaspoon of baking powder
  • 50 grams of chopped walnuts
  • 1 tablespoon of coffee extract

For the filling

  • 250 ml of milk
  • 15 grams of sugar
  • 25 grams of custard powder
  • 1 sachet (bourbon) vanilla sugar
  • 180 grams of butter, at room temperature
  • 60 grams white caster sugar
  • 2 teaspoons of coffee extract
  • 4 tablespoons of orange marmalade
  • Walnuts for decoration


Preheat the oven to 160°C top and bottom heat.

Grease a 20 cm baking tin and line the bottom with baking paper. If your oven is large enough for 2 baking tins, take two and divide the batter over the 2 tins. If you use 1 baking tin, like I do, you will cut the cake horizontally later.

Put all ingredients for the cake in a mixing bowl and mix everything until smooth and even. Pour the batter into the mold or molds and smooth it out nicely.

Bake the cake in the oven. 20-25 minutes if you use 2 moulds. Slightly longer, approx. 30 minutes, if you take 1 mould. The cake is cooked and well risen when the top springs back when pressed gently.

Remove the cake(s) from the oven and leave them in the tin for a few minutes. Then cool on a wire rack.

Make the filling. Start with the pastry cream.

Make a paste of the sugar, vanilla sugar and custard powder and a dash of milk. Stir well until smooth.

Bring the remaining milk to the boil and add a little warm milk to your custard paste. Stir well, and then you put your whole porridge in the pan with hot milk. Immediately stir well to prevent lumps and let it cook gently while stirring.

Pour the cream onto a plate or into a bowl and cover tightly with cling film to prevent a skin. Let the cream cool.

Then you make the buttercream.

Beat the softened butter in a food processor with the caster sugar until smooth and pale yellow.

Add 200 grams of cooled pastry cream and beat until you have a nice smooth and airy buttercream. Let the machine run for 10-15 minutes. When the color turns white, add the coffee extract. If it is nicely distributed and the color is even, the mocha filling is ready.

Assemble the cake.

When your cake has cooled, you can start. If you have 1 cake, cut it in half horizontally and place the top half upside down on a plate. If you have 2, you simply place them next to each other.

Heat the marmalade in a pan with a tablespoon of water and stir until it starts to boil. Divide the marmalade between the 2 cakes.

Use a piping bag to pipe buttercream over one of the 2 cakes, until it is completely covered. A nice thick layer is fine.

Place the other cake on top and pipe a thin layer of buttercream on top. Can be one layer, or live it up with beautiful figures. Top the cake with whole or chopped walnuts.

I like the cake best when it is chilled. Then the cake is a bit firmer.


You can also replace coffee extract with instant coffee and a little water. Also good is a strong espresso or rather a ristretto. For example, Palermo Espresso .

With this cake, our Single Estate from Cyangugu, Rwanda is a nice coffee to drink. Preferably as a filter coffee. Also has wonderful aromas of orange!