Brown Butter Hazelnut Cake
This delicious hazelnut cake is moist and full of nuts thanks to the brown butter added to the mixture. Finished with a delicious brown buttercream and decorated with Guylian Seafood chocolates, it's the ideal treat to enjoy on an autumnal afternoon.
For the cake:
Place the butter in a medium sized saucepan and melt it over a gentle heat, swirling the pan occasionally. As it begins to foam, swirl constantly and when the butter turns from golden yellow to a toasty brown and smells nutty, remove it from the heat and pour it into a heat-proof bowl to stop the cooking. Allow to cool at room temperature until solid but still soft and spreadable.
Heat the oven to 180C/160C fan/gas 4. Grease a round 20cm/8-inch-deep cake tin and line the base with a circle of baking paper.
Place the hazelnuts and flour in a food processor and pulse to finely grind the hazelnuts until they are similar in texture to ground almonds.
Put the cooled brown butter and sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment and whisk until pale. Switch to the paddle attachment and add in a third of the flour-nut mixture, followed by the eggs (one at a time) – mixing each egg in completely before adding the next. Then add in the remaining flour and nut mix, along with the vanilla, Amaretto and salt.
When fully mixed, scrape the batter into the tin and smooth the top. The cake will fill the tin quite a lot, but the cake won’t rise very much, so don’t worry. Bake the cake for 50-60 minutes or until a skewer poked into the centre comes out clean. Allow to cool in the tin.
For the buttercream:
Begin by browning the butter in a medium-sized saucepan and melt it over a gentle heat, swirling the pan occasionally. As it begins to foam, swirl constantly and when the butter turns from golden yellow to a toasty brown and smells nutty, remove it from the heat and pour it into a heatproof bowl to stop the cooking. Allow to cool at room temperature until solid but still soft and spreadable.
Place the butter in the bowl of a stand mixer with the paddle attachment fitted and gradually beat in the icing sugar. Don’t do it too quickly or add too much as it will go everywhere! Add the milk a tablespoon at a time until the icing is the consistency you want.
When the cake has cooled, level the top of the cake with a knife if necessary and spread the buttercream over the top of the cake.
For the Finishing Touch:
Decorate with Guylian Sea Shell chocolates and eat.