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Monday, 18 June 2012

Chocca Mocha Date and Walnut Loaf

I had the urge to bake yesterday, I'd been clearing out and tidying up all my cake supplies and saw that there was half a bag of dates that could do to be used up.  As always my thoughts drifted towards the various blog challenges that I like to join.  I flipped through an old Bero cookbook and saw a Date and Walnut Cake.  But that wouldn't do for any challenge but if I added cocoa powder and some would fit with this month's We Should Cocoa!

And so the Chocca-Mocha Date and Walnut Loaf was born.  'We should Cocoa' is a challenge created by Choclette at Chocolate Log Blog and Chele at Chocolate Teapot, but this month is being guest hosted by Lucy at The Kitchenmaid.

Chocca- Mocca Date and Walnut Loaf

200g dates
Pinch bicarbonate of soda
2 heaped tsp Nuvia Cafe or other instant coffee
150ml boiling water
75g butter, softened
75g golden caster sugar
1 egg, beaten
200g self-raising flour
25 g cocoa powder
30g dark chocolate chips or chopped chocolate
75g walnuts

1.       Heat the oven to 180C.  Grease and line a 1lb loaf tin
2.       Chop the dates ( I cut them with scissors as it’s easier)
3.       Put the dates in a bowl, add the pinch of bicarbonate of soda.
4.       Measure the boiling water into a jug to 150ml and add the instant coffee
5.       Pour the coffee over the dates and bicarb.
6.       Cream the butter and sugar, then gradually beat in the egg.
7.       Stir in the flour, nuts, chocolate and lastly the dates
8.       Place the mixture into the lined tin  and spread evenly.
9.       Bake for about 1 ¼ hours until firm.
10.   Cool on a wire rack, serve sliced with or without butter.

 I used Nuvia Cafe as I had been asked to review it.  I must say I was a little sceptical, Nuvia is promoted as Healthy Coffee. It is Sumtran Arabica coffee infused with the extracts of 100% Certified Organic Ganoderma Extract (an immune enhancer), African Mango (a healthy, natural appretite suppressant) and Pomegranate (a super anti-oxidant) I did wonder what on earth it would taste like with all those fruity flavours. 

The coffee comes in nifty little sachets which are handy to keep in your bag or in a drawer at work.
I was pleasantly surprised when I tried it, it looks like the old-fashioned powdered coffee or instant esspresso powder.  It tastes more like filter coffee than it does like instant coffee, I like my coffee fairly strong, so it suited me.  I expect if you used less than one sachet you could get a weaker cup.  Whether it has health-giving properties, I would not like to say, but it is does make a decent cup of coffee and I had no qualms about using it in my baking.

 This recipe makes a really rich dark chocolately loaf,  the dates provide a sweet moistness and the walnuts a nice crunch.  I think it would go very well with a slice of crumbly wensleydale!

Disclaimer: This is a sponsored post. I was not required to write a positive review and any opinion expressed is my own.

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At 18 June 2012 at 21:59 , Blogger Susan said...

Not a lover of coffee but the cake looks lovely and moist too. x

At 18 June 2012 at 22:26 , Blogger Janice said...

Thanks Sue. It doesn't really taste much of coffee, I think it just enhances the chocolate flavour.

At 18 June 2012 at 22:55 , Blogger Baking Addict said...

I just posted my WSC entry too and am reading another one - must be the night for it :) Love how you've added the chocolate and coffee to this date and walnut loaf - yum!

At 18 June 2012 at 23:43 , Blogger Homemade by Fleur said...

That cake looks fab. I love it when you bake something according to what is in your cupboard. I should do this more often myself. Bonus that it fit with the WSC theme too.

At 19 June 2012 at 02:57 , Blogger Unknown said...

I knew you'd come up with something good Janice and this looks fantastic. My mum used to make a date loaf that looked a bit like this one, but your chocolate and coffee additions are sheer genius!

At 19 June 2012 at 07:49 , Blogger Jacqueline Meldrum said...

Well I was going to say looks great, but don't like coffee, however if it is quite subtle...

Janice the font you use in your posts is hard to read on the iPad, because of course everything is smaller.

At 19 June 2012 at 19:33 , Blogger Janice said...

Jac - I've changed the font and put it up to 14pt, hope that is better now.

At 19 June 2012 at 20:30 , Blogger Caroline said...

That looks great - really moist with all those dates in there. I remember my mum making a date and walnut loaf from an old Good Housekeeping cookbook - nostalgia! Love the twist of adding both chocolate and coffee - very clever!

At 20 June 2012 at 12:48 , Blogger Phil in the Kitchen said...

Lovely combination of flavours. I like the idea of the cheese with it too.

At 21 June 2012 at 16:01 , Blogger Karen S Booth said...

That looks like a GREAT cake Janice and so moist too....LOVELY WSC entry, I am making mine this weekend! Karen

At 1 July 2012 at 21:15 , Blogger Choclette said...

Not sure how I missed this one. Love this adaptation of a classic date and walnut loaf - well maybe without the coffee bit ;-) Thanks for entering it into WSC.


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