Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Almond Coffee Cake

I have a thing for almonds and all things almond flavored. Whether it's marzipan, almond extract, or almond paste, I love any baked good with that general flavor. I recently bought a couple tubes of almond paste and knew I wanted to bake a cake with one of them. The last time I baked with almond paste I made amaretti cookies, but the texture was a little too chewy, so this time I wanted to try something new.

This recipe makes a great coffee cake that showcases the delicious flavor of the almond paste. The original recipe comes from an old Junior League cookbook from San Francisco, but it is one of those timeless recipe that will always taste great. My sister described the texture as a combination of cheesecake and angel food cake. It's very moist and a little dense, but it still manages to feel light and airy. The crunchy top contrasts the soft cake, and is a great addition to an otherwise basic cake. If you like almond flavored sweets, you will love this coffee cake.

Recipe from San Francisco à la Carte via Jean/Chowser at Chowhound

7 ounces (200 grams) almond paste
1 1/4 cups sugar
1 cup (225 grams) butter, softened
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup sour cream
2 cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
3/4 teaspoon salt

For the Topping:
1/2 cup chopped almonds, toasted
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup all purpose flour
1/4 (55 grams) cup butter

Preheat your oven to 325ºF/160ºC. Grease and flour a 10" tube pan or a 9" springform.

Crumble or grate the almond paste into the bowl of a Kitchen Aid mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Add the sugar and mix until combined. Gradually add the butter. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating after each addition. Mix in the sour cream and vanilla until smooth.

In another bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Fold the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients until just combined.

Mix together the topping ingredients. I used whole almonds and put everything in the food processor until the nuts were chopped.

Pour the batter into your cake form. Sprinkle with the topping. Bake for about 1 hour if using a tube pan. Bake for about 70 minutes if using a springform. Check to see if an inserted toothpick comes out clean. Pin It Now!

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