Italian Almond and Raspberry Cake
This recipe is inspired by Victoria's Pastry almond tart in Northbeach, San Francisco. Maybe some of you have tried it? My grandfather used to serve it after Sunday night dinner when I was a kid. Just seeing the white pastry box wrapped in twine made my mouth water! After testing five different variations of almond cake, it became clear that to capture the intense almond flavor of the cake, it needed almond paste. I ended up adapting a recipe from Chez Panisse to capture the spirit of the unforgettable torta I remember and I'm really happy to share it! Considering all the baking I've done this week, you'd think I'd never want to see another slice, but honestly, I could eat this cake all day, everyday! It is seriously that good. The layer of raspberry jam just above the crust is a bright surprise buried in the cake, the toasted almonds give it great texture and the powdered sugar clings to your lips, allowing the sweet treat to linger just a moment longer. It's perfect with a cup of coffee or a glass of wine.
- 1 1/3 cups sugar
- 7 ounces almond paste at room temperature, broken into 1" pieces
- 3/4 plus 1/4 cups flour
- 1 1/2 tspns baking powder
- 1 cup butter, softened
- 1 tspn vanilla extract
- 1 tspn almond extract
- 6 eggs
- 1/2 cup raspberry jam
- 1/3 cup sliced almonds
- confectioners sugar for dusting
- 1 egg
- 2 Tbspns sugar
- 1 tspn vanilla extract
- 1/4 cup salted butter, melted
- 1 cups flour
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together the egg, vanilla and sugar until uniform.
- Add melted butter and whisk to combine.
- Mix the flour into the wet mixture and knead briefly with your hands until it is well combined and forms a dough.
- Press into greased 12” springform pan with your fingers, evenly distributing dough over the base of the pan, creating a platform for the rest of the layers.
- Line the pastry shell with aluminum foil or parchment paper and fill with beans or pie weights. Bake for 20 minutes, until lightly golden at edges and allow to cool.
For the Almond cake
- In the bowl of a food processor, grind the sugar, almond paste (break the almond paste into pieces to make it easier to incorporate), 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 and baking powder and then set aside.
- Add the softened butter and the vanilla and almond extracts to the food processor, and process until the batter is homogeneous.
- Add the eggs three at a time, and process until well combined. Scrape the sides if necessary.
- Add the flour mixture and pulse the machine until the dry ingredients are incorporated. Do not over mix.
- Add a layer of raspberry jam to the top of the pastry crust. Leave about a 1/2" margin between the jam and the pan. This prevents the jam from sticking to the pan while baking.
- Pour the cake batter on top of the raspberry jam.
- Scatter almonds over the top of the cake.
- Bake cake at 325°F for 45-60 minutes, or until the top is deep brown and the center of the cake is firm to the touch.
- Remove the cake from the oven and run a sharp knife around the perimeter, loosening the cake from the sides of the pan. Allow the cake cool in the pan.
- Once cool, release the cake from the pan and allow to cool completely on a wire rack. Transfer to a serving dish and dust with powdered sugar before serving. Enjoy!