Filbert Cake with

Frangelico Dobash Frosting

Filbert Cake

August 20: Feast Day of St. Philibert

Highlander travels to work on engineering projects occasionally in Oregon where he noticed that the locals call hazelnuts “filberts.” The nut, also known as “cobnut,” was named after Philibert of Jumièges, a seventh century French abbot who cultivated the nut trees. The nuts ripened in the late summer, around August 20, his feast day. Europeans introduced filberts to North America in the 17th century and the wild nuts have been used as an ingredient in some Native American recipes [see our blog recipe post for paganens (Algonquin wild nut soup) for the Feast Day of Blessed Kateri Tekakwitha on July 14]. Prior to 1940, filberts were imported from Europe but are now grown commercially in Oregon and Washington in the United States and British Columbia in Canada.

In observance of the Feast Day of St. Philibert, we baked a filbert cake, decorated it with a filbert-based liqueur (Frangelico) dobash frosting and topped it off with toasted filberts.


(Adapted from About Recipes)

For the filbert cake

  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
  • ¾ teasppon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 6 eggs, divided
  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1 ¼ cups sugar, granulated white
  • 1 tablespoon Frangelico
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 2 cups filberts/hazelnuts, finely ground


Sift the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Beat the egg whites until white and fluffy. In a large mixing bowl, cream the butter with the egg yolks. Stir in the Frangelico. Gradually blend in the flour, alternating with the ground nuts and sour cream, until the batter is smooth.

Filbert Cake

Gently fold in the egg whites. Pour the batter into a well-greased cake pan. Bake in a preheated oven at 325 degrees for 45-55 minutes, testing the cake with a toothpick for doneness. Remove from the oven and cool on a wire rack over a larger pan.

Filbert Cake

For the Frangelico dobash frosting

(Adapted from Hawaiian Electric Company)

  • ½ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/3 cup corn starch
  • ½ cup Frangelico
  • 1 ½ cups water
  • 1 cup sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ cup (½ stick) butter
  • roasted filberts/hazelnuts


In a mixing bowl, sift the cocoa powder and cornstarch to remove any lumps. Stir in the Frangelico and mix until smooth. In a saucepan, combine the water, sugar, butter and salt. Stir and bring to a boil. Pour the Frangelico mix into the boiling saucepan. Lower the heat and continue stirring until smooth. Remove from the stove top and cool slightly. If necessary, strain the frosting through a sieve to remove remaining lumps.

Filbert Cake

Pour the frosting over the top of the cake and spread with a spatula. Let the frosting drip down the sides of the cake and run through the wire rack. Smooth the sides with a spatula. Allow the frosting to set at room temperature. Transfer the cake to a serving dish or board. Decorate with filberts/hazelnuts. Refrigerate the cake until ready to slice and serve.

Filbert Cake


  • Some sources say that St. Philibert’s feast day is on August 22.
  • Thanks to Lisa L. who provided the pulverized nuts for the filbert cake. Ground hazelnuts (or hazelnut flour/meal) also can be ordered online from Bob’s Red Mill.
  • Search our blog for other recipes using filberts/hazelnuts as an ingredient.