I spent the last five months in Tuscany, hopping from museum to museum admiring priceless art and running up and down the country, but mostly I spent the whole time on food. Eating food, learning about food, eating more food… you get the gist. Somewhere along the way I fell head over heels in love with roman cacio e pepe, with tuscan wild-boar, and with sicilian cannoli. From the head to the boot of Italy I ate… and I ate and I ate and I ate. Wherever I wandered though, there was a sweet cup of foamy, milky coffee waiting for me to drink it. I’m not even the biggest coffee person, but I could slurp these down while imagining my next meal any day.
In Italy, a cappuccino is an entire breakfast. Maybe add a pastry, possibly some Nutella, but once you add milk to coffee the Italians are pretty sure it’s a whole meal. Given the quality and ridiculous cheap pricing of those cappuccinos, I can’t find a fault with their logic.
We don’t like our cappuccinos to be as cheap here in the United States. They’ll run you around $4.00 instead of the adorable $1.20, and they’re often lacking in quality. Not only has my family taken to making them at home, but I’ve taken to shoving the milky, fresh, and bright coffee flavors into anything I can.
This time, I made something that not only tastes like cappuccino, but it pairs with a cappuccino – or a warm cup of milky coffee, dealers choice. They’ve got a tender crumb, a sweet vanilla and espresso flavor, and they’re practically begging you to invite your friends over for coffee and cake.
These cakes are just looking out for you and your well-being. Providing you with coffee intake on all levels, perfect for Monday mornings and Sunday afternoons. Go ahead. Give them a try.
cappuccino tea cakes
makes 10 mini-bundts, adapted from gbakes
2 sticks unsalted butter, a bit cooler than room temp.
1½ cup granulated sugar
3 tsp vanilla
1 tsp vanilla powder (or sub a vanilla bean, or more vanilla extract)
2 tsp Kahula, or other coffee liqueur
2 cups cake flour
3 Tbs finely ground espresso coffee
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp baking powder
½ tsp salt
½ cup heavy cream, whipped to stiff peaks
Preheat oven to 350°F. Butter and flour a mini bundt pan – making sure to get all the nooks and crannies.
In a bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter until smooth, and add the granulated sugar. Cream together, scraping down the bowl occasionally, until very light and fluffy (this can take a bit). While this is creaming, sift together the cake flour, salt, baking powder, cinnamon and espresso into a medium bowl.
Add eggs, one at a time, on medium speed to creamed butter and sugar mixture, ensuring it is fully incorporated and scraping down the bowl at the end of each addition. Add the vanilla extract and powder.
Add the flour, and then fold in the whipped cream with a rubber spatula. Fill the cavities about half full, and bang the pan on your counter a few times to get out any pesky air bubbles. Bake about 20-25 minutes, until cake springs back when poked. Let cool for a couple minutes, then turn out onto racks to cool completely.