Friday, March 25, 2022

Turkish Coffee Cake from @MaddieDayAuthor

MADDIE DAY here, with a special birthday greeting along with a delicious cake! 

Today is my uncle Richard Reinhardt's ninety-fifth birthday! He's my last remaining uncle, and he's going strong, still living in his own San Francisco row house. Uncle Dick is a lifelong writer and journalist, with quite a few published  non-fiction books as well as a novel, The Ashes of Myrna. I got to see him in December. Will you join me in wishing him a happy birthday?

Now for the recipe. Dick and my late Aunt Jo and their two older sons lived in both Greece and Turkey many years ago, so I wanted to find something from that region to make. When I ran across a recipe for Turkish coffee cake, that sounded perfect. It's adapted from Ozlem's Turkish Table.

Turkish Coffee Cake


Note: I couldn't easily find Turkish coffee. Instead I finely ground the extra dark roast I drink every morning.

2 tablespoons (finely ground) Turkish coffee

3 ounces warm whole milk

1 tablespoon cocoa powder

ounces butter

3 eggs

1 cup sugar

½ teaspoon vanilla extract

8 ¼ ounces unbleached white flour

pinch of salt

1 teaspoon baking powder

2 tablespoons whole milk


Preheat oven to 350F

Grease a loaf baking tin or round 8-in tin (or non-stick fluted cake ring) with unsalted butter.

Combine the ground coffee with warm milk, stir and make sure coffee is dissolved (or mostly) and blended well with the milk. Then stir in the coca powder and combine well. Set aside to cool.

Stir in the butter and sugar in a large mixing bowl. Using an electric mixer, cream the butter and sugar until pale and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, whisking well after each addition. Then stir in the vanilla extract and combine well.

Combine the flour, baking powder, and salt. Fold it gently into the butter, sugar and egg mixture.

Divide the cake batter into two equal portions. Add the 2 tablespoons whole milk to one portion of the cake batter, stir gently and combine well.

Stir in the combined coffee, cocoa powder and milk mixture into the other portion of the cake batter. Stir gently and combine well.

Spoon tablespoonfuls of large blobs of each cake batter into the greased tin, alternating the flavors. Position each spoonful on top of each other to give a rippled effect. Swirl the mixture gently with a skewer or chop stick to give a marble effect.

Bake for 40 – 45 minutes until the cake is springy and a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. Note: I used a 9-inch pan and it took 35 minutes.

Allow the cake to cool in the pan for 10 minutes. 

Then turn onto the rack to cool completely before slicing. 

It's delicious with a scoop of ice cream for dessert, or with coffee for brunch.


Readers: What's your favorite coffee cake? Does it have coffee in it?

My most recent release is Batter Off Dead, Country Store Mystery #10, out now!

My next release is Murder in a Cape Cottage, the fourth Cozy Capers Book Group Mystery.

We hope you'll visit Maddie and her Agatha Award-winning alter ego Edith Maxwell on our web site, sign up for our monthly newsletter, visit us on social media, and check our all our books and short stories.

Maddie Day (aka Edith Maxwell) is a talented amateur chef and holds a PhD in Linguistics from Indiana University. An Agatha Award-winning and bestselling author, she is a member of Sisters in Crime and Mystery Writers of America and also writes award-winning short crime fiction. She lives with her beau north of Boston, where she’s currently working on her next mystery when she isn’t cooking up something delectable in the kitchen.


  1. Happy birthday! Sure looks like a good cake!

  2. My favorite is the cinnamon coffee cake from the Ravelin bakery. Not sure if there coffee in it.
    Kitten143 (at) Verizon (dot) net

  3. Happy birthday to Uncle Dick!

    That cake sure sounds yummy, Edith.

  4. Wishing Richard the very best HAPPY BIRTHDAY where all his wishes come true!

    Thank you for the Turkish Coffee Cake recipe. Sounds yummy!

    Although it doesn't have coffee in it, my favorite coffee cake is the Hungarian Coffee Cake my Mom made years and years ago. All made from scratch and oh so yummy. So much in fact that for years it was the cake I requested for my birthday. Think monkey bread design but with yummy yeast balls rolled in ground pecans, sugar and butter with more goodness added between layers. Just talking about it makes me think I can smell it as it came out of the oven and the tastes was heavenly. I have the recipe and still make it from time to time, but I think mine misses Mom's secret ingredient - her loving touch.
    2clowns at arkansas dot net

  5. Happy birthday, Uncle Richard! This cake sounds fantastic.

  6. I bet you could use instant espresso powder for the coffee.
    This sounds like a winner.
    Happy birthday to your dear uncle.

  7. I wish your uncle the very happiest of birthdays! Thank you for sharing the Turkish Coffee Cake recipe & the source of the recipe. I'm all about exploring different cuisines.

  8. Happy Happy Birthday, Richard! 🎂🥳 He looks great at 95! Thanks for sharing the cake recipe!