Dense, with a lot of texture, this pound cake has walnut cream and a swirl of chocolate. It keeps well and can be frozen.
This chocolate swirl walnut pound cake made me look back on these past years.
A few years ago I ventured into the gastronomic business with a small café, something you probably know if you come here often. I closed it (sold it) a few months ago, have absolutely no regrets whatsoever of any shape, size, or form, just in case you're thinking how sad, and got my life back.
It's a hard life, which you hear about endlessly, and yet nothing compares to reality. Especially when you dive into it with another job going on and not a drop of experience. Molly of Orangette, brilliantly explains the feeling 'A couple of years ago, not long after we opened Delancey, back in the days when I was still cooking there every night and trying to write on the side and living on pizza and cookie dough and adrenaline and contemplating a third career as a mass murderer, ..'
Now that I have more time, and before it magically disappears again, for whatever reason, I decided to start investigating certain things I had on my mind for the longest time, like nut pastes and creams.
I am very familiar with the well-known frangipane (almond cream), a mixture of almonds, sugar, and eggs mainly, and an extraordinary base for fruit tarts, like pears, peaches, plums, figs, or apples as in this crackly apple almond tart.
The almond paste is the first step when making almond cream, where the nuts are ground with powdered sugar and a binding ingredient is added, in my case egg whites, though I've made it with honey and corn syrup too.
I often wondered why other nuts were not used as often as almonds. I mean, pistachios, hazelnuts, walnuts, all marvelous flavors to use in fruit tarts. Or as is the case here, in a gooey, tender walnut chocolate pound cake.
So, taking matters into my own hands, I made a walnut cream and used it in this cake, where it is treated almost as a butter and then swirled with chocolate, before a crumble is added on top. Simply wonderful.
This is a pound cake with a texture, unlike a regular pound cake. It is more buttery, not so doughy. Any nut goes well with chocolate, so feel free to change the flavor.
The crumble is a nice and crunchy surprise, which might seem too much, but it works.
Being this a very rich cake, if you have to feed many people, it's a good idea to bake it in square form, and cut it into smaller pieces. Or serve it with coffee after a meal for a perfect sweet bite to end the night.Print
Chocolate Swirl Walnut Pound Cake
Beautiful walnut loaf cake swirled with chocolate. It keeps well and can be frozen.
- Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
- Yield: 8 servings
For the cake:
- 8 oz unsalted butter, at room temperature
- ¾ teaspoon baking powder
- ¼ cup sugar
- 1 cup walnut paste, below
- 5 large eggs, at room temperature
- 2 cups cake flour or all-purpose flour
- 4 oz semi-sweet chocolate, melted
For the streusel:
- ½ cup flour
- ½ cup sugar
- 4 oz unsalted butter, cold and cut into pieces
For walnut paste:
- 1 cup walnuts
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 1 egg white
For the cake:
- Preheat oven to 350º. Butter or spray a non-stick 9x5 inch loaf pan.
- In a large bowl with an electric mixer, or the bowl of a stand mixer, cream butter with baking powder. Add sugar gradually and then walnut paste and beat for 2 or 3 minutes.
- Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Remove from the mixer and add flour in three additions, mixing well with a spatula.
- Pour into prepared pan, level batter and add chocolate on top. Swirl with a knife, bringing some white batter to the top. Add crumble over batter and bake for 45 to 55 minutes or until a tester inserted in center comes out clean.
- Cool on wire rack and unmold. It keeps, well wrapped in plastic, for a few days.
- In the bowl of a food processor fitted with the metal blade, put walnuts and powdered sugar.
- Process until well ground and mixed.
- Add egg white and continue processing until a crumbly paste forms.
- Keeps well covered and refrigerated for a few weeks.
For the streusel:
- In the bowl of a food processor fitted with the metal blade, mix flour and sugar.
- Add butter and process until crumbly.
- Do not let it form a ball.
You can also use almond cream (also called frangipane) for this recipe.
- Prep Time: 20 minutes
- Cook Time: 50 minutes
- Category: Cakes
- Method: Baking
- Cuisine: International
Keywords: chocolate walnut loaf cake
Adapted from Pastries from La Brea Bakery, by Nancy Silverton
Good for all the readers that you have now time to experiment and share many great recipes 😉 like this pound cake, that walnut paste sounds great, I would like to try it(when I am not that lazy :D)
Shut Up and Cook says
This looks absolutely spectacular. Pound cake is one of my favorites, but this takes it to a whole new level. Love the addition of the walnuts. Congrats on this new chapter!
I have never had walnut paste, that sounds like an awesome addition! Your streusel top looks so delicious! Hugs, Terra
Baking for work is so different than baking whenever and whatever you wish. I am very happy to be able to bake for pleasure and manage my own little kitchen. I am glad to hear you are enjoying developing new recipes, as we your readers are pleased with your creations! The Chocolate Swirl Walnut Pound Cake is a perfect example of delicious!
Love this cake! What a great way to use walnuts, just sounds fantastic! 🙂
Nancy @ gottagetbaked says
I often think about how life would be if I quit my day job and opened up a bakery. I'm a realistic gal - I know the hours are brutal, it's physically and mentally exhausting, and it's hard to make money. I'll just have to keep the baking as my personal hobby and make cakes like this one for myself. This looks amazing, Paula - I love that golden crumb on top and those delicious chocolate swirls. Walnuts are my favourite nut to bake with. I can't wait to try this.
Cut in smaller pieces??? Not for me. I'll take a big fat slice of this cake. I love rich cakes. I'm dying to try the walnut paste too.
Daniela Grimburg says
That cake looks stunning and so are the pictures!
Nothing beats Almond cream,it's so tasty!
Can you use this process to make any nut paste? I have been looking for hazelnut paste for EONS! This looks wonderful, well except the walnuts which I don't like but I could sub a different nut paste, right? And also, thanks for confirming my decision to never ever go into the food service industry! 🙂
Angie's Recipes says
I am totally with you about gastronomic biz...used to work in the hotel restaurants (well, that's not even my own business) and I had enough with long working time...I meant 14 hours a day was normal, 16 hours wasn't anything special..
The cake looks really rich, bet it tastes super! I would love to try the walnut cream.