Monday, March 15, 2010

Almond Cake and Thoughts of Spring

I made this delicious, springy (as in the season, not bouncy. I don't think) cake last week when it was sunny and getting warm, but now I'm writing this post when it's cold, windy, and rainy again. It just doesn't feel right. I can't not share this cake though. It's my new favorite. I love almond flavor, and this cake has the perfect amount of almond and it's not cloyingly sweet. I also love how humble this cake; and I suppose any baked goods in general; look so humble until you put some fruit on them. Add a ring of raspberries and it looks beautiful and even more delicious.

Hopefully you can find almond paste to make this cake. You don't want marizpan- it's too sweet and heavy and will sink to the bottom of your cake pan instead of incorporating into the cake. Trust me on this one. Sometime marzipan is labeled as almond paste; don't be fooled! Marzipan lists sugar first, whereas almond paste will list almonds as the first ingredient. I found mine at a gourmet food shop, you can sometimes find it in the grocery store or always online.Although I think I'm the only person I know who would buy a baking ingredient online...

Makes 8 servings
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 8 oz almond paste, grated
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp almond extract *don't be tempted to add a little more like I sometimes do with vanilla. Almond extract is very strong!
  • 1/2 all purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt 
  • 1 cup raspberries

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. In a food processor mix butter, almond paste and sugar using on/off pulses until smooth. Or beat with a hand mixer until smooth. 
  3. Beat in eggs, vanilla, almond extract. Sift dry ingredients, add to batter, and mix.
  4. Pour batter into a 9-inch cake pan lined on the bottom with parchment paper. Bake 35 to 40 minutes or until browned on top and firm to the touch. Cool in pan 5 minutes, then cool on cooling rack completely. Top with raspberries.

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