From the kitchen of One Perfect Bite...One of autumn's pleasures is the profusion of nuts that flood Oregon's markets and farm stands. I buy them in quantity at that time, and freeze walnuts and hazelnuts to use throughout the remainder of the year. May tends to be a month of overlap and those lovely nutmeats sitting in the freezer need to be used, so space can be made for berries that are starting to come in. This simple cake is one I make when my freezer is in transition. It is a Bavarian hazelnut cake that is much like one I had as a child. This is an exceptional snack cake, and I know those of you who try it, will love it. The cake and glaze both contain hazelnuts, and the cake, while unsophisticated, has a European air about it. I like to make this cake the day before I plan to serve it. Its flavor improves remarkably if it is allowed to "ripen" for a day or two. Do give this recipe a try. Here is how the cake is made.
Hazelnut Cake with Nutella Glaze ...from the kitchen of One Perfect Bite
1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup granulated sugar
3 large eggs, room temperature
1-3/4 cups all purpose flour, divided use
3/4 cup milk, room temperature
1 teaspoon hazelnut or vanilla extract
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 cup finely chopped, then toasted hazelnuts
8 ounces hazelnut spread (i.e. Nutella)
1/4 cup heavy cream
1) Adjust rack to middle third of oven. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Lightly grease and flour a 8 x 11 x 2-inch baking pan or a 10-inch Bundt pan. Set aside.
2) In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, cream butter and sugar. Add eggs, one at a time, mixing until batter is pale and lemon colored. Add 1 cup flour and stir to combine. Mix in milk and hazelnut or vanilla extract. The mixture will appear curdled. Combine baking powder, reserved 3/4 cup flour and toasted hazelnuts in a small bowl. Add to batter; mix until well-blended.
3) Scrape batter into prepared pan. If using an 8 x 11 x 2-inch pan bake for 35 minutes. If using a Bundt pan bake for 50 to 55 minutes. A cake tester inserted in the center of the cake should come out clean. Allow to cool for 10 minutes; invert and remove pan. Cool to room temperature.
4) Meanwhile combine hazelnut spread and cream in a small saucepan. Heat until hazelnut spread melts. Remove from heat and cool. Pour or spread over cake. Yield: 12 servings.
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