Today I woke up and decided I wanted to bake a cake. It was my lovely friends’ birthday on Wednesday and I hadn’t seen her in such a long time. So I used this as an excuse to make and eat a cake because I wanted to have it. Is there really anything wrong with that? I blame society for making me feel like I had to make an excuse, and also you if you’re now sitting there judging me silently on the other side of this screen. However if you agree with me then great, lets run away together and live off cake for the rest of our lives.
I got out the recipe notebook and began perusing the pages, skipping past the tabs labelled ‘fish’ and ‘vegetables’ and the likes. These pages, they will never be filled. My tummy was beginning to feel full from the bag of GIANT dairy milk buttons I’d just consumed (it wasn’t even lunchtime). Nothing that a can of Diet Coke won’t help me digest I thought to myself (I like to play pretty fast and loose with the facts of digestion and nutritional health). On account of how much chocolate I had already eaten that morning, I decided to rule out anything with more than 1 layer, and also frosting (I’m not an animal for gods sake), and ended up with a Chocolate Almond Torte. I had made this before and knew it was easy peasy as well as delicious. It’s rich, moist and very light, and I really do love almonds and the texture that the ground almonds bring to this cake in lieu of flour. Served with a dollop of whipped cream and icing sugar dusted on top this cake really is the business. No photos of any individual slices as I was bringing the cake in its entirety over to a friends’ house and obviously didn’t want to show up with a slice missing (if you remember I did mention earlier that I wasn’t an animal). Happy Baking!
100g Ground Almonds
200g Semisweet Chocolate (I used 100g dark 72% and 100g milk)
4 Large Eggs
150g Granulated Sugar
150g Unsalted Butter
1/2 tsp Vanilla Extract
1/4 tsp Cream of Tartar
1/2 tsp Almond Essence
- Preheat Oven to 190°C/Fan 170°C and place the oven rack in the centre of the oven. Line an 8″ springform pan with baking paper.
- Separate the cold eggs putting the yolks in one bowl and the whites in another. Cover and leave until they reach room temperature.
- Melt the chocolate and butter together over a low heat. Leave aside to cool.
- Place the egg yolks and 100g of the granulated sugar in a bowl and beat until pale and thick. Beat in the melted chocolate and vanilla extract. Fold in the almonds.
- In a clean bowl whisk the egg whites until foamy. Add the cream of tartar and continue whisking until soft peaks form. Gradually add the remaining 50g of sugar and whisk until stiff peaks form. Gently fold about 1/4 of the whites into the chocolate batter to lighten it. Quickly fold in the rest of the whites and mix only until just incorporated.
- Pour the batter into the pan and bake for 35 to 45 minutes or until a skewer comes out with just a few moist crumbs. Remove from the oven and cool on a wire rack.
- Dust with icing sugar.
The cake will rise during baking a fall and crack as it cools leaving a crisp and cracked crust on top.