Almond-flavored cake, raspberry preserves and frangipane (a soft almond paste) combine to create a delicious and sophisticated layered dessert.
Raspberry almond dream cake
- 2-1/4 cups cake flour
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1-1/4 cups buttermilk
- 4 large egg whites
- 1-1/2 cups granulated sugar
- 8 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
- 3/4 cup (about 7 ounces) almond paste (not marzipan)
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon almond extract
- 1 egg
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- Raspberry preserves
- 1/2 cup butter, room temperature
- 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
- 2-3 tablespoons milk, room temperature
- 2-3 cups powdered sugar, sifted
- 2 cups almonds, toasted and crushed
- First, make your frangipane, as it can be kept in the fridge for weeks. In the bowl of a food processor, pulse the almond paste until it is crumbly.
- Add the butter, sugar, vanilla extract, almond extract, egg, flour and salt. Continue to pulse until the mixture is combined and smooth. Cover it tightly and refrigerate until needed.
- To prepare the cakes: Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. Butter two (9-inch) round cake pans and line the bottom of each pan with a round of buttered parchment or wax paper.
- Sift together the flour, baking powder and salt.
- Whisk together the milk and egg whites in a medium bowl.
- Combine the sugar and the butter and beat at medium speed for a full 3 minutes, until very light.
- Beat in the extracts, then add 1/3 of the flour mixture, still beating on medium speed.
- Beat in half of the milk-egg mixture, then beat in half of the remaining dry ingredients until incorporated.
- Add the rest of the milk and eggs, beating until the batter is homogeneous, then add the last of the dry ingredients.
- Finally, give the batter a good 2-minute beating to ensure that it is thoroughly-mixed and well-aerated.
- Divide the batter between the pans and smooth the tops with a spatula.
- Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, or until the cakes are well risen and springy to the touch -- a thin knife inserted into the centers should come out clean.
- Transfer the cakes to cooling racks and cool for about 5 minutes -- then run a knife around the sides of the cakes, unmold them and peel off the paper liners.
- Cool completely, then cut each layer in half horizontally. (It helps tremendously to freeze the layers for about 30 minutes first.)
- To make the frosting, beat the butter with an electric mixer for a few minutes.
- Add the extract and milk and briefly blend.
- Add the powdered sugar gradually until the frosting is thick enough to spread easily. If the frosting is too dry, add additional milk until the desired consistency is reached.
- To assemble, liberally brush the four sides of exposed cake with the raspberry preserves.
- Divide the frangipane into thirds and slather it between the halved and preserved layers (stacking as you go), then frost the sides and top in a decorative fashion.
- Press the toasted almonds into the sides, if desired. Chill for a bit to let things mingle, then slice and serve!