Absolutely Almond Cake
Simply heaven for almond fans, but you could make it with ground pistachios if you prefer. Best served in very small squares alongside an espresso to balance the sweetness. Keeps for up to five days in an airtight tin.
Makes 30 pieces
250g butter, melted, plus extra for brushing
350g ground almonds
225g granulated sugar
4 tsp almond extract
Zest of an orange (optional)
50g almonds, roughly chopped
1 Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/gas mark 4. Cut a rectangle of baking parchment to line the bottom of a 30 x 23 x 4cm baking tin. Brush the tin liberally with melted butter before popping in the baking parchment.
2 Knead the marzipan to soften it. Roll it between two pieces of baking parchment to fit the baking tin. Set aside.
3 Put the eggs into a large mixing bowl. Add the ground almonds, sugar and almond extract, then add the melted butter. Beat with an electric mixer at high speed until smooth and creamy. Add the grated orange zest to the mixture if using and mix well.
4 Pour half of the mixture into the tin, and smooth over with a palette knife. Gently place the rolled-out marzipan on top.
5 Pour over the remaining cake mixture and smooth over, taking care to cover the marzipan completely.
6 Sprinkle the chopped almonds over the top.
7 Bake for 30 minutes, until the top and sides are a light golden colour. To check, push the cake away from the edge of the tin with a palette knife and have a peek.
8 Cut into small squares. This can be served either warm or cold.