This is a treasured family recipe passed down from my mother. 






Skill level

Average: 3.3 (18 votes)


  • 120 g (¾ cup) whole almonds, chopped
  • 465 g caster sugar
  • 1 tbsp potato or cornflour
  • 25 g (¼ cup) dark cocoa powder
  • 1½  tsp baking powder
  • 1 tbsp instant coffee granules
  • 200 g ground almonds
  • 25 g stale breadcrumbs
  • 10 eggs, separated

Cream icing

  • 600 ml thickened cream
  • 75 g (⅓ cup) caster sugar
  • 1 tbsp dark cocoa powder
  • 1 tbsp instant coffee granules

Cook's notes

Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.


You will need a 21 cm x 31 cm slab pan. Use breadcrumbs from 3-day-old bread, not the dried variety, or the cake will be gritty.

1. To make icing, using an electric mixer, whisk cream to soft peaks. Add remaining ingredients and whisk until combined. Refrigerate.

2. To make praline, place almonds on a lined oven tray. Place 165 g sugar in a small pan over medium heat. Cover and cook, shaking pan occasionally, for 6 minutes or until golden. Pour over almonds and set aside until hard. Break into pieces and process in a food processor until coarsely ground. Set aside.

3. Preheat oven to 150°C. Grease and line the base and sides of a 21 cm x 31 cm slab pan. Sift flour, cocoa and baking powder into a bowl. Stir in coffee, ground almonds and breadcrumbs. Using an electric mixer, whisk egg yolks in a large bowl with remaining 300g sugar for 5 minutes or until pale and fluffy. Fold in almond mixture. Whisk egg whites to soft peaks. Working in 3 batches, fold egg whites into cake mixture. Pour into prepared pan. Bake for 1 hour and 10 minutes or until a skewer inserted into centre comes out clean.

4. To assemble cake, cut cake horizontally into 3 layers. Place 1 layer on a platter, spread with one-third of the icing, then scatter with one-third of the praline. Repeat twice more with remaining cake, icing and praline. Serve.



As seen in Feast magazine, Issue 9, pg56.

Photography by Alan Benson.