Coffee spekkoek

Coffee spekkoek

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  • 8 to 10
  • Easy
  • 1 hour, plus cooling time
  • 40 minutes

“Spekkoek is an Indonesian layer cake developed during colonial times in the Dutch East Indies. Each layer is baked before the next is added, and the result is dense and richly flavoured. A thing of beauty.” – Herman Lensing


  • 500 g butter, softened
  • 15 free-range eggs, separated
  • 260 g icing sugar, sifted
  • 175 g cake flour, sifted
  • 3 T cocoa powder
  • 3 T Woolworths espresso instant coffee
  • 1 T ground cinnamon
  • 1 t ground nutmeg
  • 1 t ground cloves
  • 90 g butter, melted

Cooking Instructions

1. Preheat the oven to 170°C. Line a 30 cm springform cake tin with baking paper and spray well with non-stick cooking spray.

2. Cream the butter using an electric mixer until light and creamy, about 5 minutes. Set aside. Beat the egg yolks and icing sugar together using an electric mixer until thick and creamy, about 10 minutes. Set aside.

3. Beat the egg whites until soft peaks form. Using a large metal spoon, fold the beaten butter, egg whites and flour into the egg yolk mixture.

4. Divide the mixture in half and fold the cocoa, coffee and spices into one half. Spoon ½ cup of the plain batter into the tin and spread evenly over the bottom. Bake for 5 minutes, or until it begins to brown on the edges and the cake is cooked.

5. Remove from the oven and brush some of the melted butter over the cake using a basting brush. Spoon ½ cup of the coffee-and-spice batter on top of the cooked plain layer. Spread evenly and bake for 5 minutes or until cooked through. Brush with butter. Repeat the process until the cake tin is filled. Remove the cake from the oven and allow to cool. Serve thinly sliced with lashings of butter.

Find more cake recipes here.

Videographer: Romy Wilson
Photographer: Jan Ras
Production: Herman Lensing

Herman Lensing Recipe by: Herman Lensing
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At just 22 years old, Herman landed the role of food editor at SARIE magazine, where he quickly made a name for himself with his innovative recipes and bold flavour combinations. Herman went on to become the editor of SARIE KOS, and has since published several standalone cookbook magazines under his own name.

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