Sunday, March 17, 2013

Almond Cake

It's hard to put into words how much I love this cake.  It's on the dense side, in a good way, and explodes with almond flavor.  It doesn't look like much, but if you love almond, and I definitely do, this cake will blow your mind!  David Lebovitz really came through on this one.  I'm so happy to know about this lovely little cake and will be making it many, many more times in the future. 

I made this for a lunch at school and served it with this chocolate sauce and fresh strawberries.  Now I'm eating it with a few raspberries.  I think it would also be delicious with this blueberry sauce or pastry cream or whipped cream or jam or . . .  you get the idea.  It's pretty darn good all on its own, too.   

You'll definitely want to bust out your food processor for this cake.  The food processor helps get the almond paste really fine and makes it really easy to mix everything together. 

If you've never used almond paste, you'll find it on the baking aisle at the grocery store.  It's a little pricey ($6-7 for an 8 ounce can), but be assured, it's worth every dime. 


  • 1 1/3 cups sugar
  • 8 ounces almond paste
  • 3/4, plus 1/4 cup flour
  • 1 cup (8 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature, cubed
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon almond extract
  • 6 large eggs, at room temperature

Preheat the oven to 325ºF.

Grease a 9-inch cake pan (with 2-inch sides) with butter.  Soften butter and use a silicone brush or paper towel to thoroughly coat pan with butter.  Dust it with flour and tap out any excess. Line the bottom of the pan with a round of parchment paper. There are some good tips about this here. 

In the food processor, grind the sugar, almond paste, and 1/4 cup of flour until the almond paste is finely ground and the mixture resembles sand.

In a small bowl, whisk together the remaining 3/4 cup of flour, baking powder, and salt.

Add the cubes of butter and the vanilla and almond extracts to the food processor and process until the batter is very smooth and fluffy.

Add the eggs one at a time, processing a bit before the next addition.  Open the machine and scrape the sides down to make sure the eggs are getting fully incorporated.  After you add all the eggs, the mixture may look curdled. Don’t worry; it’ll come back together after the next step.

Add half the flour mixture and pulse the machine a few times, then add the rest, pulsing the machine until the drying ingredients are just incorporated, but do not overmix. You can also transfer the batter to a bowl and mix the dry ingredients in, which ensures the dry ingredients get incorporated evenly and you don’t overbeat it.

Scrape the batter into the prepared cake pan and bake the cake for 65 minutes, or until the top is deep brown and feels set when you press in the center.

Remove the cake from the oven and run a sharp or serrated knife around the perimeter, loosing the cake from the sides of the pan. Let the cake cool completely in the pan.

Once cool, tap the cake out of the pan, remove the parchment paper, and set on a cake plate until ready to serve.

Dust with powdered sugar prior to serving. 

TIP: Warm the bottom of the cake pan directly on the stovetop for just a few seconds, which will help the cake release.

STORAGE: This cake will keep for four days at room temperature, well-wrapped. It can also be frozen for up to two months.  

SOURCE:  David Lebovitz

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