Espresso Cake with Hot Kahlua Syrup. Doesn’t just reading the title of the cake sound amazing? I knew that chocolate and coffee were a good match, but never realized this about lemon. It is that little hint of lemon that really makes this cake special.
The method for creaming the butter and sugar for this cake is a little time consuming, but the end result of a beautiful light crumb will be worth it. Other than that, the cake is very straightforward to put together and the syrup is a breeze – and it is kind of fun to poke the small holes and pour the syrup over the top, knowing that the cake is going to be moist.
3 tablespoons instant espresso
¼ cup boiling water
¼ cup cold water
2¼ cups sifted cake flour
1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
½ cup (1 stick) butter
½ teaspoon freshly grated
1½ cups superfine or strained sugar
3 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
½ cup sour cream
Kahlua syrup ~
⅔ cup Kahlua or Tia Maria liqueur
⅓ cup water
3 tablespoons honey
1. Position rack in lower third of the oven and preheat to 350℉.
2. Spray a 10-cup bundt pan with baking spray.
3. In a small bowl, dissolve the espresso in boiling water. Stir in the cold water and set aside to cool.
4. Using a triple sifter, sift together the flour, cocoa, baking soda, and salt. [If you do not have a triple sifter, sift the dry ingredients together three times.] Set aside.
5. Cut the butter into 1-inch pieces and put them and the lemon rind [zest] in the large bowl of an electric mixer fitted with beaters of paddle attachment. Soften on low speed, then increase speed to medium-high and cream until smooth and light in color, about 1½ to 2 minutes.
6. Add the sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, taking about 6 to 8 minutes to blend it in well. Scrape the sides of the bowl occasionally.
7. Add the eggs, 1 at a time a 1-minute intervals. Blend in the vanilla and sour cream. The mixture will look somewhat curdled at this point. This is okay.
8. Reduce mixer speed to medium-low. Add the dry ingredients alternating with the espresso, dividing the dry ingredients into three parts and the espresso into two parts, starting and ending with the flour. Mix just until incorporated after each addition. Scrape the sides of the bowl and mix for 10 seconds longer.
9. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the surface with the back of a tablespoon. Center the pan on the rack and bake in the preheated oven for 55 to 65 minutes, or until the cake begins to come away from the sides of the pan and a twig of straw or a toothpick inserted into the center comes out dry.
10. Remove from the oven. Set the pan on a cake rack for 10 to 15 minutes to cool slightly.
Kahlua syrup ~
1. In a small saucepan blend the Kahlua, water, and honey. Bring to a slow boil and simmer 2 to 3 minutes.
2. Remove from heat.
3. Pierce the top of the cake with a wooden skewer and slowly spoon the hot syrup over the top of the hot cake.
4. Let stand in the pan for at least 1 hour to allow cake to absorb all the liqueur, then invert onto a rack and remove pan.
5. Store at room temperature under a glass dome or in an airtight container for up to 7 days.