Makes one 10-inch tube cake
The flavor of almonds in this butter-cake batter comes in the form of ground nuts and again as extract. The batter is luxurious; even before it’s baked you’ll notice how striking it looks. Ground almonds are packaged by Bob’s Red Mill as “almond meal flour.” It goes into the batter with the flour, then more ground nuts mixed with sugar are swirled into the batter before baking. Use a heavy one-piece tube pan.
|⅓||cup granulated sugar|
|¼||cup almond meal flour|
1. In a bowl, combine the granulated sugar and ¼ cup almond meal flour.
2. Stir thoroughly; set aside.
|Butter (for the pan)|
|Flour (for the pan)|
|½||teaspoon baking powder|
|½||cup almond meal flour|
|¾||pound (3 sticks) unsalted butter, at room
|2¾||cups granulated sugar|
|1½||teaspoons almond extract|
|1||teaspoon vanilla extract|
|1||cup heavy cream|
|Confectioners’ sugar (for sprinkling)|
1. Set the oven at 325 degrees. Butter a plain, one-piece 10-inch tube pan. Dust the pan with flour, tapping out the excess.
2. In a bowl, whisk the flour, baking powder, salt, and ½ cup almond meal flour to blend them.
3. In an electric mixer, beat the butter for 3 minutes on medium speed. Add the granulated sugar in 4 additions, beating for 1 minute after each. Beat in the eggs, one at a time. Blend in the almond and vanilla extracts.
4. With the mixer set on its lowest speed, blend in the flour mixture alternately with the cream, beginning and ending with flour. Scraping down the bowl often.
5. Remove the bowl from the mixer stand. Spoon a little more than half the batter into the pan; smooth the top. Sprinkle the sugar-almond swirl on top. Spoon the remaining batter into the pan and smooth the top. Use a round-bladed table knife to swirl the mixtures with wide strokes.
6. Bake the cake for 1 hour and 20 minutes to 1 hour and 30 minutes, or until a skewer inserted into the middle of the cake is clean when withdrawn. The baked cake will pull away from the sides of the pan.
7. Set the cake on a rack to cool for 15 minutes. Carefully invert the cake onto another cooling rack, then invert again so it stands right-side up. Cool completely. Sprinkle with confectioners’ sugar. Lisa Yockelson