Orange Almond Cake with Swiss Meringue Buttercream
Try this orange almond cake, adapted from "Entertaining," for an irresistible end to any meal.
The Martha Stewart Show, January 2010
- Yield Makes one 8-inch two-layer cake
- 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, melted and cooled, plus more for pans
- 1 1/2 cups sifted cake flour (not self-rising), plus more for pans
- 1 cup plus 3 tablespoons sugar
- 6 large eggs, separated
- Grated zest of 2 oranges
- 2/3 cup strained, freshly squeezed orange juice
- 1/2 teaspoon pure almond extract
- 1 1/2 cups finely ground blanched almonds
- Pinch of salt
- Swiss Meringue Buttercream (http://www.marthastewart.com/254994/swiss-meringue-buttercream)
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter two 8-inch round cake pans and line with parchment paper. Butter parchment and flour cake pans; set aside.
- In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat together 1 cup of sugar and egg yolks until light and fluffy. Add orange zest, juice, and almond extract; mix until well combined. Turn mixer off. Remove the whisk and add the paddle attachment. With the mixer on medium, slowly add ground almonds, followed by flour; mix cake batter until well combined.
- In a large bowl, whisk egg whites until soft peaks form. Add salt and remaining 3 tablespoons sugar; beat until stiff but not dry. Set aside.
- Fold melted butter into cake batter, a little at a time. Gently fold in egg white mixture, taking care not to deflate whites. Divide batter evenly between prepared cake pans. Transfer to oven and bake until a cake tester inserted in the center of each cake comes out clean, about 35 minutes. Transfer cake layers to a wire rack to cool completely.
- Invert cakes to remove from pan and remove parchment paper; reinvert cakes. Using a serrated knife, trim tops of cakes to make level. Place four strips of parchment paper around perimeter of a serving plate or lazy Susan. Place the first layer on the cake plate. Spread frosting over the first layer with a small offset spatula so it extends just beyond edges.
- Place the remaining layer on top, bottom-side up. Gently sweep away any loose crumbs with a pastry brush. Using an offset spatula, cover the top and sides with a thin layer of frosting (also use any of the excess frosting visible between the layers). Refrigerate until set, about 30 minutes.
- Using an offset spatula, cover cake again with remaining frosting.
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