30 Jul 2010

Gâteau à la Châtaigne

Approx 10 slices
Preparation: 5 mins
Cooking: 35 mins

The recipe for this incredibly easy-to-make flavoursome cake was given to my partner by Jean, our globe-trotting pâtissier. Beneath its golden armour, this sweet treat is a treasure trove of moistness and lightness!

Here cup measures keep the recipe foolproof (based on one cup measure = approx 200g or 1/4l), so put away those scales and measure converters. If you are unable to source Corsican chestnut flour (farine de châtaigne corse) either online, from a specialised delicatessen, or directly from a Corsican producer, replace with any other flavoured flour.
  • 1 cup white flour
  • 1 cup fine Corsican chestnut flour
  • 1 cup caster sugar
  • 1 cup semi-skimmed milk
  • 1 cup groundnut oil (or sunflower oil)
  • 2 whole eggs
  • 10g baking powder
  • butter to grease the tin
Preheat the oven (160°C).

Meanwhile place all the ingredients together in a bowl and blend thoroughly with a spoon. Pour the mix into a greased tin (for reference, I used a 28cm diametre tin) and then place in the middle shelf of the preheated oven.

Cook for 35 mins. The cake should rise, develop a dark golden colour thanks to its chestnut content, and present a slightly crackled look as per the picture. Yet when pricked with a knife, it should present a moist and crumbly texture. Do not be tempted to overcook the gâteau as it would get dry and this isn't the end result we are aiming for here.

Enjoy on its own, or serve with a fresh fruit salad. It will keep for a few days, but I'm confident it will be gone in seconds!

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