Baked: Tricolor Almond Cake
October 7, 2015
By Amrita Rawat
I recently tried one of Piccione Pastry’s tricolor cookies and fell in love. It’s a cake-like cookie made with almond paste, dyed three different colors, sandwiched with apricot or raspberry jam and coated in chocolate. I usually don’t like fruit and chocolate combinations, but this simply works. I wondered what it would be like in a giant cake form, so I set out to try to make a tricolor cake for an almond-loving friend.
I had plenty to go around and sent many slices to everyone I knew. They all sent me messages raving about how delicious it was. The cake is very soft and not too heavy, despite its density from the amount of almond filling used. Instead of almond paste, I opted for almond pastry filling, which is lighter and readily available in the baking aisle of most grocery stores. I also drizzled a few tablespoons of amaretto over each cake before sandwiching them together for boozy almond goodness.
If you even think you might like almond desserts, bake this cake. It takes a bit of work if you don’t have three of the same pan (I had to take turns baking each layer in my single loaf pan), but the effort is well worth it when you slice to those gorgeous colors.
Tricolor Italian Cake
Adapted from a recipe by Alejandra Ramos
Makes 1 9-by-5-inch loaf cake
¾ cup (1½ sticks) unsalted butter, softened
¾ cup granulated white sugar
3 large eggs
6 oz. almond pastry filling
½ cup milk
½ Tbsp. almond extract
1½ cups all-purpose flour, sifted
1½ tsp. baking powder
¼ tsp. kosher salt
Red food coloring
Green food coloring
Yellow food coloring
½ cup heavy cream
6 ounces semisweet chocolate
6 Tbsp. amaretto
4 Tbsp. raspberry or apricot jam (I recommend Bonne Maman.)
Fresh berries or fruit for servings
• Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Butter 3 9-by-5-inch loaf pans and line the bottoms with parchment paper.
• In the bowl of a stand mixer, cream together the butter and sugar on medium-high speed until fluffy, 3 to 5 minutes. Add the eggs and continue to beat on medium-high until combined, then beat in the almond pastry filling, milk and almond extract and milk until combined.
• Use a spatula to gently fold in the flour, baking powder and salt. Evenly divide the batter into 3 medium mixing bowls. Drop enough red food coloring into 1 bowl to achieve the desired color. Repeat with the green and yellow food coloring in the remaining 2 bowls.
• Pour the batters into the 3 loaf pans. Bake 20 to 25 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Let cool 10 minutes, then invert onto a cooling rack and let cool completely.
• Meanwhile, make the ganache by simmering the cream in a small saucepan over medium heat, until the edges start to bubble. Remove from heat, add the chocolate and cover. Let sit 1 to 2 minutes, then whisk gently until smooth. Let cool to room temperature.
• Place the red cake on the serving platter. Drizzle with 2 tablespoons amaretto, then spread 2 tablespoons jam on top in an even layer. Stack the yellow cake on top, drizzle with another 2 tablespoons amaretto and spread the remaining 2 tablespoons jam on top in an even layer. Add the final green layer, drizzle with the remaining 2 tablespoons amaretto, then cover the cake tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate 20 minutes.
• Unwrap the cake and pour the ganache over the top, spreading it evenly down the sides with a small spatula, until the cake is completely covered. Refrigerate 1 hour to set, then slice and serve with fresh fruit.
Original article: Sauce Magazine