Spanish Almond Cake

Saturday, 13 July 2013

Spanish Almond Cake

Spanish Almond Cake - Gluten free, grain free, dairy free

I got this delicious recipe from Epicurious. I was searching for a wheat free cake as it was my nephews name day and I offered to make a cake. I had to make something I could eat so searched for a wheat free cake and found this one.

The story of the cake is what drew me to this Almond Cake recipe as I have had many Almond Cakes and most of them boring but this one is heavenly.

The Almond Cake recipe is from Claudia Roden's Food of Spain. Apparently those who visit the great Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela in Spain, where the relics of the apostle Saint James are believed to be buried, see the cake in the windows of every pastry shop in town.

I definitely want to do this walk one day. It is one for the bucket list.

I have changed a few of the ingredients as I didn't agree with them. I don't like using too much sugar and don't like almond essence at all as it always tastes so fake.

I think if I make this again I would reduce the sugar even more or even try honey. I find when I use honey it makes the cake heavy and it doesn't rise as much. I am still experimenting. Also this is a very sweet cake so I might not use the vanilla essence either.

This cake is so deliciously light and the aromas of the orange and lemon peel are absolutely divine. It has an incredible aroma and will make you kitchen smell so fresh and homey. Always a good sign of a great recipe.

I placed the cake in a 20cm cake tin but it is traditionally made a bit thinner so if you have a larger tin just use that. It can be made in many sizes, big and small, thin and thick.

Let me know what you choose to do and how you went. It's always fun playing with recipes.

Spanish Almond Cake Recipe

1 3/4 cups blanched whole almonds
6 large eggs, separated
3/4 cup caster sugar
Grated zest of 1 orange
Grated zest of 1 lemon
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
Icing sugar for dusting or cover cake in apricot jam

Finely grind the almonds in a food processor.

With an electric mixer, beat the egg yolks with the sugar to a smooth pale cream. Beat in the zests and vanilla extract. Add the ground almonds and mix well.

With clean beaters, beat the egg whites in a large bowl until stiff peaks form. Fold them into the egg and almond mixture. I love doing this. It's so nice and fluffy. The mixture is thick so you will need to do a lot of gentle folding until they combine.

I sprayed a 20cm/8 inch cake tin with olive oil and lined it with baking paper but you can use any size tin. A larger more shallow dish is more traditional. Pour the cake batter in the tin and bake in a preheated oven at 180C/ 350°F for 40 minutes, or until firm to the touch.

Cool in tin for a few minutes then allow to cool on wire rack.

Before serving dust the top of the cake with icing sugar or you can use apricot jam.


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