Cake Lady’s Coffee Treats
- Credit: Carol Kearns
Find out why coffee and cake, are one of this local ladies favourite treats!
It’s official – we’re no longer a nation of tea drinkers. Listening to the radio the other day I heard that, outside the home, we now drink twice as much coffee as tea. But it’s not just in coffee shops or cafés that we’ve been seduced by espressos, lattes, cappuccinos and americanos - the latest survey from the Office for National Statistics shows that the average household also spends twice as much on coffee as tea for drinking in the home.
I’m more than doing my bit for keeping the average spend on tea from falling any lower. I’m known by family and friends for my ability to drink copious amounts of tea - and proper tea at that. Spare me the disappointment of entering an establishment that offers “a wide selection of teas” only to find that they don’t mean tea at all but herbal or fruit infusions. I remember once visiting some delightful tearooms decorated with vintage china and stacked high with cakes and scones. After being regaled with a long list of supposed teas (though technically tisanes), I asked if they had any proper teas. They did, I was told, have “Earl Grey . . . oh, and builders’ brew”. And don’t get me started on cafés that bring you tea in the guise of a teabag floating in a vast bowl of off-the-boil water.
While I do drink the occasional latte or cappuccino, I still don’t like coffee flavoured food. I therefore only have my husband’s word, as a coffee drinker, that these biscuits are absolutely delicious. Served plain, or sandwiched together with the mocha icing, I’m assured that these melt-in-the-mouth biscuits are a real treat for coffee lovers - if not me!
Makes 24 biscuits
2 tsp instant coffee granules
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160g self-raising white flour
80g unsalted butter, chilled and diced
80g caster sugar
1 medium egg
For the mocha icing (optional)
2 tsp cocoa, sifted
½ tsp instant coffee granules
40g unsalted butter, softened
100g icing sugar, sifted
½ tsp vanilla extract
You will need
1 baking sheet
non-stick liner or butter for greasing
1 In a bowl, dissolve the coffee granules in one tablespoon of hot water. Leave to cool.
2 Preheat the oven to 180C/gas mark four and line or lightly grease the baking sheet.
3 Sift the flour into a mixing bowl. Rub the butter into the flour until the mixture resembles find breadcrumbs (or use a food processor.) Stir in the sugar with a wooden spoon.
4 Add the egg to the cooled dissolved coffee and beat lightly. Gradually add to the mixture using just enough to bring it together to form a soft but not sticky dough.
5 Divide into 24 equal portions. Use your hands to roll into a ball and place, spaced equally apart, on the baking sheet.
6 Bake in the oven for about 15 minutes. Leave on the baking sheet for two minutes and then transfer to a cooling rack.
7 To make the icing, dissolve the cocoa and coffee in one tablespoon of hot water. Place all the ingredients into a bowl and beat with a wooden spoon until smooth and thick. Use to sandwich the biscuits together in pairs.
The icing softens the biscuits so only use to sandwich them together just before serving.
See more of Carol’s recipes and baking tips at www.theartofbaking.co, and her illustration work at www.carolkearns.co.uk