Coole Swan Honey and Lime Opera Cake

“I had some help and expertise from the Coole Swan team (who are fantastic). They knew some flavours that I could match with Coole Swan. I put lime and Coole Swan together and surprisingly they worked so well together. That was kind of my inspiration itself. The Coole Swan team which know their product so well. It was also the summer, it was during lockdown and I spent a lot of time in my garden with my kid. I was seeing all these bees and thinking we are so afraid of them but what they do and the honey they produce is so magical. We are so lucky there are so many great honey producers in Ireland. I thought lets mix our lime and Coole Swan with honey and this way get the sharp opera on top, layered with the subtle creaminess of Coole Swan and the sweetness of delicious honey.” – Elena Martinez, Head Pastry Chef.


Soft Almond and Bee Pollen Sponge

112g Almond flour

1g Bee pollen

50g Strong flour

112g Icing sugar

75g Egg whites

25g Cream

225g Egg whites

125g Caster sugar

Crumble mix

Crumble Mix

87g Butter (cubed)

38g Icing sugar

14g Egg

1g Salt

140g Plain flour

Coole Swan and Honey Creme

150g Egg yolk

70g Caster sugar

113g Honey

250g Cream

260g Coole Swan

9g Gelatine powder

45g Water

Lime Curd

400g Lime puree

120g Egg yolk

150g Egg

130g Caster sugar

3g Gelatine

150g Cold butter

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How to make Coole Swan Honey and Lime Opera Cake

Soft Almond and Bee Pollen Sponge

Step 1.

This is a basic cake sponge. To make the batter – gently blitz the bee pollen with the almond flour.

Step 2.

Then, Add the fresh cream and egg whites into the flour mixture and fold until just combined.

Step 3.

To make the meringue – whisk 2 egg whites at a medium speed until the mixture stands up in stiff peaks. Increase the speed and slowly add the caster sugar.

Step 4.

The mixture should be shiny with a soft peak. Fold the meringue into the batter. Do not over mix.

Step 5.

Preheat the oven to 180°c and line an oven tray with parchment paper and grease. At this stage pour in the cake mix. Spread it to an even layer of around 1cm

Tip: For extra texture at this point, you sprinkle a ‘’crumble mix’’ on top. Bake for 14 to 18 minutes until golden on top. Leave to cool


Crumble Mix

Step 1.

Combine all the ingredients in a bowl and using your hands, mix until you get a crumbled texture.

Step 2.

Keep this crumble in the fridge to put on top of the sponge before cooking.


Coole Swan and Honey Creme

Step 1.

Mix the gelatine and water and in a pan warm the Coole Swan and Cream.

Step 2.

Heat the honey in a separate pan.

Step 3.

When the honey is caramelised pour half of it over the Coole Swan Cream. It will bubble and rise. Whisk. Then pour over the other half. Boil for two minutes. Remove from the heat.

Step 4.

In a pan whisk the egg yolks and caster sugar together. Once they are combined use a sieve to pour the honey and Coole Swan cream mixture.

Step 5.

Heat and whisk continuously.

Tip: Remove from the heat once it reaches 82°C and has thickened. Add the gelatine and stir. Set aside to cool.


Assemble of the cake

Step 1.

You will need 1 loaf tin. Start by cutting four pieces of the sponge in the same length and width.

Tip: I like to soak the sponge with honey syrup to make it more moist. If you have any extra sponge keep it.

Step 2.

Place one sponge in the bottom of the loaf tin. Pipe on 100g of the lime curd and spread evenly.

Step 3.

Place another sponge on top and pour 250g of the Coole Swan and Honey Cream on evenly. Repeat.

Tip: To make the shape of the honeycomb place bubble wrap on top of the cake. Put in the freezer for 2 hours. Remove and place in the fridge. If you want to do it without the shape of the honeycomb put in the fridge for 2 hours to set.

Tip: Add any decorations you want, for this recipe I made a ‘’wall’’ from white chocolate. For the honeycomb effect just spread the melted chocolate on an acetate sheet and place the bubble wrap on top. Press to make sure that the chocolate gets into every corner of the bubble paper. Let it set in until it gets hard. Carefully, take the bubble paper out and with a warmed knife. Paint it with edible gold.

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