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International Desserts for the Winter Olympics: Italian Almond Cake

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As the eyes of the world turn to the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics and we witness some of the finest athletes in the world compete in their chosen sport, there is no need to be watching on an empty stomach! As the world gathers in Sochi, Russia, we bring the world together in the kitchen and celebrate international diversity with some classic world famous desserts!

Go into any bakery in Italy and you will see a version of this wonderful cake. During the winter months, you will find this cake being made in most Italian kitchens. It is simple, it is delicious and it epitomizes the season.

If you take a look at the picture, you will notice this cake is pure almonds. It is held together by the beaten egg whites and a touch of flour. It is one of the lightest cakes you will ever enjoy and as far as desserts go, rather nutritious.

There is not a single winter that goes by where this cake is not featured at least once at Casa de Cuisine. If you are lucky enough to have a place in your area which makes fresh gelato, a great and authentic treat would be to serve this cake with a small scoop.

Ingredients needed to make Italian Almond Cake (makes 1 cake):

  • 2 cups almonds
  • 1 1/3 cups sugar
  • 8 egg whites
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. grated lemon zest
  • 6 Tbs. flour

Steps:

  1. Pre-heat oven to 350. Line the bottom of an 8-inch springform pan with parchment paper.
  2. Into a food processor or blender add the almonds and sugar and grind very fine (DO NOT PUREE)
  3. In a large bowl whisk the egg whites and salt to form stiff peaks (this is a meringue).
  4. Into the meringue fold the almonds, lemon zest and flour.
  5. Spoon the mixture into the prepared pan and smooth out. Place in the oven and bake 1 hour.
  6. Remove from the oven and let cool in the pan before serving.

The internationally bestselling cookbook from Chef Larry Edwards, "Edwardian Cooking: 80 Recipes Inspired by Downton Abbey's Elegant Meals," is now in it's third printing and available worldwide in both hard cover and e-book versions. The paperback version will be released March 4, 2014.

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