Tuesday, March 30, 2010

How to breathe marzipan grass

message from January, 15th :
When I spend one day without baking a cake, I feel it's as if there was nothing to crunch, especially at tea-time. Sometimes I can live without it, but it seems the people whom I live with, can't. After Christmas, I had some ingredients that I had not included in final menu, because there was already enough food. Among these, there was marzipan. Digging in my "Sophie's cakes" book, I inevitably found my happiness, and I simply added a few apricots that I wanted to finish as quickly as possible.

The result of this marzipan, orange blossom and apricot cake is up to my expectations. Melty as you can wish, probably as soft as the caterpillar's mushroom (though this vision is not particularly tempting), this is a genuine treat!

Ingredients for a fair-y cake :
3 eggs
100g icing sugar
100g butter
130g flour
1 full teaspoon of baking powder
170g marzipan
1 teaspoon orange blossom
zest and juice of 1 lemon
+ 50g flaked almonds for garnish

Preheat oven to 180 ° C.
In a bowl, cut the marzipan into small pieces and crack a first egg. Beat with a whisk, and when the almond paste begins to loosen, break the second and third egg. Beat several minutes until the marzipan is almost melted into the mixture. Gradually add the icing sugar, flour, baking powder, orange blossom extract, lemon zest and juice, apricot pieces and then melted butter. Mix until dough is smooth.

Pour batter into a round mould, previously buttered and floured, and bake 40 minutes. Unmould the cake right out of the oven so it won't stick on the walls.

It's important to use icing sugar for this recipe, because it dissolves instantly in the dough. I think it also makes the cake lighter, while remaining smooth and extremely tender. What to accompany with it? An apricot sherbet for epicurean ones or a flower-perfumed tea for the wisest. It's up to you. I would choose both.

Detail from Arthur Rackham's plate of Alice in Wonderland, by Lewis Carroll, from 1898's edition.

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