Almond Cake

  • The almond tree originated in Asia and it is thought that almonds were one of the earliest domesticated fruit trees.
  • Because of traders moving on the Silk Road, almond trees, were established in the Middle East and Mediterranean areas.
  • By 1,000 BC they were grown in Greece and later in Rome, where almonds were referred to as nut Graeca  – Greek nut.
  • By 716AD almond trees were growing in France
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  • Did you know that almonds are not a true nut but the seed part of a stone fruit, a drupe, similar to apricots, peaches and plums?
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  • Almond  is  Prunus amygdalus
  • The English word almond comes from the old French almando.
  • The Italian word is mandorle.
  • The Polish is migdał(singular) migdały (plural).
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  • Although this cake is simple, it is truly delicious.

Ingredients

  • 125g butter
  • 150g caster sugar
  • 3 eggs – separated
  • ½ teaspoon almond essence
  • 75g ground almonds
  • 40g plain flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • Handful of flaked almonds

Method

  • Pre-heat the oven to GM4 -180°C.
  • Use a cake liner to line a 20 cm diameter cake tin.
  • Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
  • Add the egg yolks and almond essence and whisk till fluffy again.
  • Mix the ground almonds, flour and baking powder together.
  • Fold this mixture into the creamed mixture.
  • Whisk the egg whites till they are stiff.
  • Fold the egg whites into the cake mixture.
  • Spoon the cake mixture into the lined cake tin.
  • Smooth the top down.
  • Sprinkle the flaked almonds on the top.
  • Bake for 40 – 45 minutes.

 

Placek with Almonds

I stayed in Derbyshire (home of the Bakewell Tart) in 2018 and I came across a recipe for a cake using yoghurt which I adapted and this was posted as PlacekDerbyshire Inspired.

This is a variation I tried out using almonds.

I used Greek style full fat yoghurt – If using my own yoghurt I would strain it a little so it becomes thicker.

Ingredients

  • 250g butter or block margarine
  • 225g caster sugar
  • 150ml of Greek style yoghurt (full fat)
  • 4 eggs
  • 1/2 a teaspoon of almond essence
  • 230g self raising flour
  • 50g of ground almonds
  • 1/2 teaspoon of baking powder
  • Sour cherry jam or other slightly tart jam
  • 50g of flaked almonds

Method

  • Grease and line 22 x 32 baking tin – use 1 piece of greaseproof to do the 2 long sides and base.
  • Pre-heat the oven to GM4 – 180°C
  • Place the flaked on a tray and pop them under the grill for a few minutes to toast them.

 

 

 

 

 

  • Mix together the yoghurt, eggs and almond essence
  • Mix together the flour, ground almonds and the baking powder.
  • Beat together the butter and sugar .
  • Add the yoghurt, egg and essence mixture and beat well.
  • Add the flour mixture and beat till you have a unified smooth mixture.
  • Using a big spoon and spatula put the mixture into the prepared tin.
  • Bake in the oven for 10 minutes.
  • Carefully take the cake out of the oven and place large teaspoon ‘blobs’ of jam on the top – I did 12 teaspoons at even intervals.
  • Cover the top with the toasted almonds and quickly put it back in the oven.

 

 

  • Bake for around another 25 – 30 minutes.

 

 

  • Place on a cooking rack and leave until it is cold to take out of the tin.
  • Cut into squares or rectangles to serve.

 

 

Served on teaplates by Wedgwood, Hathaway Rose  – 1959 -1987