Walnut Cake with Tahini
This Walnut Cake is flavoured with tahini which gives it an extra nuttiness. Chopped walnuts and tahini are included in the cake batter and the buttercream icing also includes tahini. The cake is decorated with toasted sesame seeds and more chopped walnuts.
Using tahini and yogurt in the cake batter results in a beautifully tender sponge. The tahini ensures that the sponge does not dry out as well as adding an extra dimension of flavour. I think this is the perfect easy autumn (fall) cake.
What is tahini?
Tahini is a paste made from ground, roasted sesame seeds which is used in cuisines of the eastern Mediterranean and north Africa. It is used in both savoury dishes, such as hummus, and also in sweets like halva. It adds a distinctive nutty flavour to dishes and is a good flavour partner for walnuts.
The flavours in my cake are inspired by nevzine, which is a traditional Turkish dessert. It is made from a dough incorporating walnuts and tahini which, when baked, is then soaked in a sweet syrup. I have eaten nevzine in Turkey and enjoyed it although it is slightly too sweet for my taste. However, I thought that the walnut and tahini combination might be pretty good in a traditional loaf cake.
You can buy tahini in most supermarkets and also in specialist Middle Eastern or stores. It keeps for several months in the fridge and can be used in lots of different recipes. I use it in salads, such as my Beetroot Salad with Yogurt and Tahini, and also in home-made Butternut Squash Hummus.
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What you need to know about my Walnut Cake with Tahini
- This is a very simple loaf cake. It is quick and easy to make. As with all cakes of this kind, if your butter (stage 5) is at room temperature it makes the cake-making process much easier.
- You can use walnuts that are already roasted or use walnuts that are not roasted. However, roasting your walnuts just before they are used makes a huge difference to the flavour. It is really easy to do this. Simple put the walnuts in a frying pan with no oil and dry fry them (stage 2) until they are toasted. Sometimes it is hard to tell if they are done from looking at them. They will give off a delicious roasted-nut aroma when they are done. If in doubt, taste a piece of the chopped nuts. You need to keep an eye on the nuts while they are dry frying and stir them occasionally to prevent burning.
- Similarly, dry frying the sesame seeds (stage 3) makes a big difference to their flavour.
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Other loaf cakes
I love baking and have lots of easy baking recipes for cakes, biscuits (cookies) and muffins. I especially like making loaf cakes. They are quick, easy, versatile and do not require any extra icing or decoration (unless you want to do it). If you want a basic everyday cake, look no further than a loaf cake. They are also a great base for experimenting with flavours which is a big reason for me to love them. If you like my Walnut and Tahini Cake recipe, you might like some of my other loaf cake recipes.
- Cherry and Almond Cake – traditional favourite which combines sweet glace cherries with ground almonds
- Coconut Cake – a full-on celebration of coconut made with dessiccated coconut and coconut cream
- Ginger and Pear Cake – fresh pears in a loaf cake flavoured with ginger
- Gingerbread Loaf Cake – old-fashioned gingerbread cake made with treacle and brown sugar
- Earl Grey Cake – a simple cake flavoured with Earl Grey tea and citrus
- Latte Cake with Salted Caramel – a mild coffee cake topped with swirls of salted caramel – a caramel latte in the form of a cake!
- Lavender Cake – delicate and delicious floral cake flavoured with lavender
- Lemon Drizzle Cake – a classic cake for all the right reasons – an easy hit of lemony deliciousness!
- Lime Drizzle Cake with Coconut – a simple coconut-flavoured cake flavoured with fresh lime and lime drizzle
- Orange Drizzle – using oranges in this drizzle cake gives a softer citrus flavour
- Rhubarb Crumble Cake – rhubarb crumble in cake form – simple cake containing fresh rhubarb and with a streusel topping
- Rosemary Cake – a simple, unusual cake flavoured with fresh rosemary
- Rum Banana Bread – absolutely the best way to use up those squishy bananas
- Thyme Cake – another simple cake flavoured with fresh thyme
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Recipe for Walnut Cake with TahiniPrint
This deliciously nutty Walnut Cake with Tahini is very quick and easy to make. It is flavoured with toasted walnuts, tahini and sesame seeds.
For the cake:
- 125 g (4.5 oz) butter
- 175 g (6 oz) caster sugar
- 2 eggs
- 175 g (6 oz) self-raising flour
- 2 tablespoons tahini
- 2 tablespoons Greek yogurt
- 50 g (2 oz) walnuts
For the icing:
- 50 g (2 oz) butter
- 100 g (4 oz) icing sugar
- 1 tablespoons tahini
- 10 g (0.5 oz) sesame seeds
- 25 g (1 oz) walnuts
- Set your oven to 180 degrees centigrade or Gas Mark 4.
- Dry fry all the walnuts – the 50 g for the cake and the 25 g for decoration – in a small frying pan. Stir to ensure that the do not burn. When they are brown and toasted, remove from the pan, roughly chop them and set aside to cool.
- Dry fry the sesame seeds that you will use for decoration, following the same method, and set aside to cool.
- Grease a 450 g loaf tin and line the bottom with baking parchment. Alternatively, use a baking parchment loaf tin liner.
- Cream the butter with the sugar. This is much easier if the butter has been left out of the fridge for at least an hour and is at room temperature.
- Gradually add the eggs to the butter and sugar mixture. If it looks as if it is going to curdle, add some of the self-raising flour.
- Once the eggs have been incorporated add the rest of the self-raising flour.
- Stir in the tahini and Greek yogurt.
- Add 50 g of the chopped, toasted walnuts.
- Spoon the cake mixture into your prepared loaf tin.
- Put the tin in the oven and bake for 45 minutes.
- Remove the cake from the oven and allow to cool completely.
- Make the butter icing by beating the butter with the icing sugar. This is much easier if the butter is at room temperature. Add the tahini and beat to combine.
- Spread the icing over the top of the cake. Sprinkle with the roasted sesame seeds and the remaining roasted chopped walnuts.
Keywords: walnut cake, tahini cake
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