By The Gentleman
This is the first entry in our newest category ‘Boozefood’. As you can guess Boozefood refers to food that has booze in it, so you can get sauced while you sauce!
I’m a bit of a baker so it’s only natural that the first recipe comes from a Frankie Magazine book called Afternoon Tea. The book collects recipes, I assume from readers of Frankie Magazine, and focuses on sweet treats that have been handed down from generation to generation. One of those recipes was for a Macadamia Beer Cake, a delicious combination of beer, dates and macadamias.
Beer Cake Recipe
1 cup brown sugar
1 ½ cups self-raising flour, plus 2 tablespoons, extra (for dates to stop them sticking)
1 teaspoon mixed spice (cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice)
1 cup draught beer (I used a Cooper’s Pale Ale)
1 cup chopped dates
½ cup chopped or roughly crushed macadamia nuts
Preheat oven to 180°C. Grease a springform tin.
In a mixing bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in egg. In a separate bowl, sift the flour and mixed spice. Alternately, fold the sifted flour mixture and beer into the batter mixture until combined.
In a separate mixing bowl, combine dates, nuts and extra flour. Fold the nut mixture into the creamed butter mixture.
Transfer batter to tin. Bake for 50 to 60 minutes, or until a skewer inserted into the centre of the cakes comes out clean.
The cake is very quick and easy to make. The most time consuming part is chopping up the dates and macadamias (luckily I had The Lady on hand to help with that). My spice mixture consisted of ½ teaspoon of cinnamon, 3 whole allspice berries that had been crushed in a mortar and pestle, and a liberal grating of nutmeg. When it came to cooking the cake it only took 40 minutes in my oven. I’d suggest that you check the cake after 30 minutes to see how it is progressing. The tin I used was quite big, but shallow so it cooked quicker while a small, but higher tin would take longer.
Flavour-wise it was pretty damn good. We couldn’t really wait for it cool down properly before cutting a piece because it smelled so goddamn tasty. It really needed to cool down a little more, to cut a nicer piece, but man it was nice. The cake was soft and moist, from the use of the beer I’m guessing, while the brown sugar and dates had given it a delicious crunchy outer and almost caramel flavour. The macadamias give the cake a nice crunchy texture whenever you come across one and the spices work nicely with all the other flavours to just make it taste awesome.
The Lady and I were very happy with this cake and everyone around us must have been as well because it all went a little too quickly. This is definitely something I’d like to make again but with different beers and maybe some different nuts just to play around with the flavours. Some of the Sixpoint Brewery ales sound like they might be good in a cake. The cake also gets bonuses points for giving you an excuse to drink beer at 10am, the rest of the beer has to be used somehow.