Here's the thing about Mocha Cakes. They are deceiving. When you tell someone that you are bringing Mocha Cakes, they picture some kind of Starbucks-inspired dessert. Not so. They have nothing to do with mocha, chocolate, or coffee...but I still refuse to call them anything but Mocha Cakes, because that's what Nan called them.
In scouring the internet, I only came up with one hit that seemed like "our" Maritime Mocha Cakes, courtesy of Cooking My Way Across Canada. There are several pictures of similar looking squares, but they call them "peanut cake bars"...admittedly, less deceiving that calling them Mocha Cakes, but I am not changing my ways now.
Maybe you recall when I've posted in the past about using Nan's recipes cards (like shortbread cookies, orange bread, and butterscotch squares). I can't even put into words how much I love using her recipes. I love her handwriting, I love the splatters on her favourites, and I love the memories that flood my mind when I take my first bite of the finished product.
I will provide you with my Nan's pound cake recipe, but I promise not to judge if you want to buy one. If you make Nan's recipe, don't forget to beat like hell, as instructed. (How awesome is that?!)
Doesn't Nan's pound cake just have the most perfect crust?
Now, Nan would use thinned vanilla icing. Since I already have some insecurities about the use of the word "mocha" for these squares, I use Nan's recipe for coffee icing. She used it exclusively on her coffee squares, but I don't think she'd mind me experimenting by using it on Mocha Cakes.
1 Tblsp butter, melted
1 1/2 C icing sugar
3 Tblsp (+/-) hot coffee
3 C crushed peanuts (Nan would say unsalted peanuts, but I LOVE using salted!)
Combine melted butter, icing sugar, and coffee. Beat until smooth. You want the icing to be thin enough to drip, but not watery.
Roll cubes of cake into thin icing. Allow excess to drip off. Coat in peanuts and place on wax paper until set. Store in an airtight container. These also freeze well.
Of course, I had to photograph them on her china...
I am linking this post with #ThisIsBliss ...a delicious recipes that bring back memories? Yeah, that's bliss.