Almond Cake

Almond Cake - trustinkim

At Christmas I made the best-ever stollen, and had a whole lot of marzipan left over that have been storing in the freezer. Recently I searched for the perfect way to use the marzipan, and found a lot of sites where people raved about this Almond Cake recipe from Amanda Hesser’s book Cooking for Mr. Latte. I used the recipe from this site, and I can see why so many people raved about it. The cake is quite moist, has an amazing sweet almond flavour.

To make this cake you will need to plan ahead by giving refrigerated items time to come to room temperature.

The recipe calls for a springform pan, but you could try using a loaf pan. When using a springform pan the cake sinks in the middle, and that might not happen in a loaf pan – please let me know if you do experiment with it!

This cake keeps well for a week or so unrefrigerated. I froze half of it and pulled it out a week later when I needed it.

What you need:

  • 1 cup butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup sour cream, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 cups all purpose flour, sifted and then measured
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 & 1/2 cups sugar
  • 7 ounces almond paste, cut into pieces (I used marzipan)
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 1 teaspoon almond extract
  • optional: icing sugar for sprinkling over the cake before serving.

What you do:

  1. Line a 9-inch springform pan with parchment paper and butter it. Preheat the oven to 350F.
  2.  Mix the sour cream and baking soda together in a small bowl.
  3. Sift the flour and salt.
  4. Cream the butter and sugar until fluffy. Add the almond paste little by little, then beat for 8 minutes.
  5. Beat the egg yolks in one at a time, then beat in the almond extract and sour cream mixture.
  6. Reduce the mixer speed to low and gradually add the flour and salt, beating just until combined.
  7. Pour the batter into the springform pan and use a spatula to even out the top.
  8. Bake immediately for about an hour; it will be done when you press the top lightly and it returns to its original shape. I rotated my pan carefully half way through baking so it would bake evenly.
  9. After removing the cake from the oven, allow it to cool completely on a wire rack.
  10. To serve, remove the ring from the springform pan, and if you wish you can sift a little icing sugar over the top.

 

Summer Cake

apricot and raspberry cake - trust in kim

If speed of consumption is any indication, then this cake is a favourite – it disappeared in 5 minutes flat at the potluck I brought it to this afternoon.  And I can see why (although I didn’t get to try it) – a light almond cake with apricots and raspberries; how could that not be good? Perfect served still warm from the oven, and might even be nice with a little vanilla ice cream.
I found the recipe on lottieanddoof, and the original recipe comes from Ripe by Nigel Slater, which I am now going to have to get my hands on.

What you need:

  • 3/4 cup butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup minus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 & 1/3 cup self-rising flour (see below for a method if you don’t have any)
  • 1 scant cup ground almonds (almond meal)
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • 4 or 5 ripe apricots (2 peaches might be nice too)
  • 1 to 1 & 1/2 cups  raspberries

If you have no self-raising flour you could do this, which is what I did, with success:

  • measure 1 & 1/3 cups of all-purpose flour and take out 2 & 1/2 teaspoons
  • add 1 & 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • add 1/2 teaspoon salt

What you do:

  1. Line a 8-inch/20 cm springform pan with parchment paper.
  2. Preheat the oven to 350 F.
  3. Halve and seed the apricots and chop them into bite-sized pieces.
  4. Cream the butter, then add the sugar and beat until light and fluffy.
  5. Add the eggs one at a time and beat well.
  6. Combine the flour and ground almonds, then add 1/3 of it to the batter, mixing until just about combined, and do this twice more with the rest of the flour/almonds.  Add the milk and mix briefly, just until combined.
  7. Gently fold in the fruit.  I folded in the apricots and put the raspberries on top, but I think it might look prettier if there are raspberries mixed in.
  8. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top down a little.  Bake for 1 hour to 1 hour 10 minutes, testing for doneness with a toothpick – if any batter sticks to it, put it back in the oven for a few more minutes.
  9. Let the cake cool for about 10 minutes, then run a sharp knife around the edge before removing the ring.  Stand back and watch it disappear.  This one is probably best the day it is baked.

 

a cake for midsummer - trust in kim

Apricot Almond Cake

almond apricot cake - trust in kim

A big bowl of apricots was sitting in my kitchen ripening, and it was crying out to be made into a cake.  I searched around quite a bit fora recipe that looked more interesting than the usual, and found this gorgeous one on hungryrabbitnyc.com. What I love so much about this recipe is the addition of ground almonds and almond extract in the cake, and the use of rum and apricot jam to bring out the flavour in the apricots. It tasted amazing when it was still slightly warm, and surprisingly good the next day.  I can imagine it would also be really good with plums or nectarines on the top instead of apricots.

What you need:

2 tablespoons apricot preserve

3 tablespoons dark rum

1 pound apricots, halved and pitted

3/4 cup sugar

1/3 cup ground almonds

3/4 cup  unbleached all-purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

6 tablespoons/3 ounces unsalted butter , cut into 6 pieces, slightly softened

1 large egg , room temperature

1 large egg yolk , room temperature

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/2 teaspoon almond extract

icing sugar for serving (optional – I forgot to sprinkle it on)

What you do:

1. Heat the apricot preserve and the rum in a large saucepan on medium heat.  Add the apricots, cut side down, and cook without touching them for 5-7 minutes, or until they begin to release their juices. Put these aside while you prepare the cake batter.

2. Prepare a 9-inch springform pan by greasing and flouring it.  Heat the oven to 350F, with the rack in the middle of the oven.

3. Combine the sugar, ground almonds, flour, baking powder and salt in a food processor.  (I did this by hand because I was at a cabin without all the gadgets, and it worked fine that way.)  Add the butter and combine until it is the texture of coarse sand.  Add the egg and extra yolk, along with the vanilla and almond extracts, and mix just until combined.

4. Spread the batter into the prepared pan, using a spatula to even out the surface. Carefully stir the apricot mixture to coat the fruit with the rum glaze, then arrange the fruit on top of the batter.  In the original recipe it looks like they are arranged cut side up, but I put mine on cut side down because I wanted to show off the bit or redness in the apricot skins.

5. Bake for 40-50 minutes, or until an inserted toothpick comes out with just a few crumbs attached but is not doughy.  Run a sharp knife around the edge of the cake, then allow it to sit for half and hour before releasing it from the pan.

Sprinkle the icing sugar on top if you wish, then serve delicious wedges of cake.

apricot almond cake slice - trust in kim

Almond Cake

For my dad’s birthday I baked him this cake. Not a birthday cake, just a really good cake to enjoy with his coffee.  He said it was “really good,” and my mom agreed.  That’s the only review I’ve got of this one so far, aside from the fabulous aroma that took over my kitchen while it was baking!

What you need:

1/2 cup slivered almonds, toasted

1/2 cup unsalted butter

1 cup sugar plus a little for sprinkling

zest of one lemon

2 large eggs

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon vanilla

1/2 teaspoon almond extract

1 cup flour

What you do:

1.  Melt the butter and then allow it to cool.

2.  Combine the sugar and lemon zest, using your fingers to rub the zest into the sugar until the sugar is a bit moist.

3.  Add eggs one at a time, and whisk after each one.  Whisk in salt, vanilla and almond extracts.

4.  Stir in the flour, then fold in the melted butter.

5.  Pour the batter into an 8 or 9 inch greased pan.  Sprinkle the toasted almonds and then some sugar on the top.

6.  Bake at 350F for 25-30 minutes or until golden, and a toothpick comes out clean.

7.  Cool the cake in the pan, then cut into squares to serve.