Sunday 20 February 2011

The Cake Slice February 2011: Coffee Heath Bar Crunch Cake (GF)

This months Cake Slice cake turned out to be a bit of a hidden gem of the cake world. It’s not much to look at, and reading the recipe I was left feeling a little underwhelmed by its description. However, as with lots of things in life, don’t judge too harshly by first impressions. Despite in rather plain and simple appearance this cake is layered with flavours of toffee, coffee and butterscotch.

The cake comprises of a light sponge, studded with tiny grains of instant coffee, which add little bitter coffee hits whenever you happen across one. I’ve never thought of adding coffee to a cake this way before, but I loved the contrast it added against the sweet brown sugar cake. Just before baking, the top of the cake is scattered with a light streusel mixture made from crumbled Heath Bars which gives the cake a little crunch and a fabulous butterscotch flavour.

Heath Bars are an American candy/chocolate bar of a thin layer of brittle toffee surrounded by a thin coating of chocolate. Very similar to Dime bars here in the UK. I didn’t have access to Heath Bars, but I did have a bag of Heath Chips (toffee pieces) sent to me from America by the lovely Monica. I used those and loved the toffee butterscotch flavour they imparted.

I baked my cake for 15 minutes less than the recipe suggested after other bakers had commented that their cakes were cooked much before the time given. The resulting cake was light, soft and tender with a very fine crumb. It did crumble a little, but I suspect this was mainly due to my use of gluten free flours than the cake itself. It tasted delicious when served with a few raspberries.
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Coffee Heath Bar Crunch Cake (GF)
(Recipe from Cake Keeper Cakes by Lauren Chattman)
For the Cake
180g plain flour (I used 100g buckwheat & 80g brown rice flour)
1 tbsp instant espresso powder
1½ tsp baking powder (I used 2tsp)
½ tsp salt
100g unsalted butter, softened
220g light soft brown sugar (I only used 170g)
1 egg
1 egg yolk
1½ tsp vanilla extract
220ml milk
(1tsp xanthan gum if making gluten free)

For the Streusel
50g chopped Heath bars or brittle toffee/butterscotch
2 tbsp light soft brown sugar
2 tbsp plain flour (or rice flour)
15g butter, softened

Method – Streusel
Preheat the oven to 180C. Grease a 9inch round springform pan.
Combine the Heath bars, brown sugar, flour and butter in a medium mixing bowl. Work the mixture with your fingers until it resembles large crumbs. Refrigerate until ready to use.

Method – Cake
Combine the flour, espresso powder, baking powder and salt in a medium mixing bowl.
Combine the butter and brown sugar in a large mixing bowl and cream with an electric mixer on medium-high speed until fluffy, about 3 minutes, scraping down the sides of the bowl as necessary. With the mixer on low speed, add the egg, egg yolk and vanilla.
With the mixer on low speed, add a third of the flour mixture and then half the milk, scraping down the bowl after each addition. Repeat, alternating the flour and milk, ending with the flour.
Scrape the batter into the prepared pan and smooth into an even layer with a spatula. Scatter the streusel onto the batter, distributing it evenly over the cake.
Bake the cake until golden and a toothpick inserted in the centre comes out clean, 55 to 60 minutes (Mine was done in 40minutes). Let the cake cool in the pan on a wire rack for 5 minutes. Release the sides of the pan and use a large spatula to slide the cake from the pan bottom to onto a wire rack. Cool completely, cut into wedges and serve.
Store uneaten cake in a cake keeper or wrap in plastic and store at room temperature for up to 3 days.
Makes one 9 inch round cake


Snooky doodle said...

this looks divine :)

Aveen said...

Wow... this looks like my sort of cake! I'll be giving it a go with dime bars :)

Brownieville Girl said...

I used curly wurly's instead of the Heath Bars - didn't get the butterscotch flavour that you did, but it was pretty good anyway!!

Your cake looks beautifully light, good idea to use the coffee granules in there for the pockets of coffeeness (!).

Kelly-Jane said...

I baked mine less too, yours looks lovely :)

Jocie's Mom said...

It looks super tasty! I'm a Heath Bar nut so this is right up my alley!

Anonymous said...

These are literally coffee cakes all right, and it sounds so deliciouss!

beauty be told said...

looks moist and delicious

Anonymous said...

Looks great Katie! So glad you enjoyed it. My co-workers gave it a great review as well :)

Unknown said...

Yours looks very good. I ende up baking mine a little under also, but that's because it was in cupcake form, and even then I think mine only took about 20 minutes...

Elle said...

Beautiful Cake Katie! This is my favorite cake so far...but then I love coffee. Totally impressed at how easily you seem to convert recipes to gluten free!

Helen said...

This sounds lovely, especially as I love Dime bars!

Stephanie said...

You cake came out beautifully. I'm so jealous that your topping didn't disappear into the cake.

Sprinzette said...

I've only just discovered your blog - it all looks fantastic. Can't wait to come back for more inspiration.


Saucy Diva said...

Looks great! My batter was alot more runny, but the finished product looked the same. How scumtious is that topping???

Emily said...

This looks Great!

The Caked Crusader said...

My dad would love this cake - I'm printing it off to make for him!

Unknown said...

I couldn't find anything similar to Heath bits so I ended up not making them, but I sure wish I did. That cake looks awesome!!

Butter Hearts Sugar said...

Toffee, coffee and butterscotch. Yum yum and yum! It looks and sounds like a lovely cake.

All That's Left Are The Crumbs said...

This cake had me at coffee and only got better from there. Mine was a touch dry so next time I will take it out of the oven a little sooner. Yours look nice and moist.

Please Do Not Feed The Animals. said...

What a perfect-looking cake!
I wonder if my oven was too hot - the topping just disappeared into the cake.

Jodie said...

Looks great!

Anonymous said...

Love this GF version of Heath bar cake. YUM!

Choclette said...

He he, I read this as health bars and was wondering what was so healthy about toffee and chocolate. Sounds like a really interesting cake and it looks lovely and light.

Anonymous said...

This look like such fun. Can you tell me how I can join the cake slice group?
Best- Sandie