great British blog off

Great British Blog Off: Easy Espresso Tray Bake

Considering I thought we’d left cakes behind, I was a little surprised to see this suspiciously cake-like recipe on the menu for this week.

My sponge suspicions aside, I approached this recipe with particular excitement. A chocolately, coffee sponge coated in more chocolate? This may be the closest yet to a recipe I would eagerly attempt even outside of this challenge.

The word “easy” is also a comfort after the cake-tastrophy that rounded out my foray with recipes utilizing the word “sponge.”

And so, without further ado, let’s see how it went!

This Week’s Recipe: Easy Espresso Tray Bake

The Prep

If I’d had a bit more chocolate on hand, I could’ve accomplished this recipe without a trip to Fresh Market. But thankfully, I had to drive out to my favorite place to pick up more chocolate and a bit of milk, as well.

It just so happens that this week, the Fresh Market had ever so slightly shifted the organization of some of their shelves, which caused my browsing to take just a bit longer as I realized the spices were no longer next to the other baking supplies, but around the corner. As a creature of habit, I’m always a little thrown when they reorganize my grocery store, but nevertheless, I managed to find everything I needed.

I also realized that they do, in fact, sell golden syrup in the baking aisle at Fresh Market! That meant I could do the whole recipe as intended, no American swaps from British staples required.

The Bake

Easy is indeed the key word for this recipe.

The sponge is pretty standard, using self-rising flour as opposed to eggs whipped to the ribbon stage (thank god), and the filling of brown sugar, cinnamon, and chocolate chips came together with ease, as well.

Azula was particularly interested in trying to snag some of it, seemingly aware that the chocolate and coffee combination is forbidden for doggos.

I can’t say I blame her. The whole thing smelled delicious, all coffee milk and cinnamon sugar. Once it came out of the oven, all that I had to do was melt a bit of chocolate with butter and the exciting golden syrup.

The frosting spread overtop the cake, taste testing time arrived. I would describe the flavor of this as a chocolately coffee cake, if coffee cake involved actual coffee.

It is a light, fluffy sponge with a nice crunch from the cinnamon and chocolate chips. Mine did sink to the bottom–I’d opt for mini chocolate chips next time. And there will definitely be a next time.

It’s been nice having some easier recipes to work my way into the new chapter, but I am excited to see what the showstopper level of this chapter looks like in quite a few weeks from now.