The one dinner party dish that I was totally responsible for on my own was the one thing I didn’t take pictures of! Pazienza! You’ll just have to imagine a grainy looking light brown one-layer cake.
I learned how to make this almond cake around the same time I learned how to make the wine crust for torte salate. It’s another one of Veronica’s recipes, with a few variations.
Torta di mandorle
half a pound of almond meal or finely ground almonds
12 Tbsp of sugar
6 Tbsp butter
1/2 cup flour
pinch of salt
vanilla and almond extracts
Beat the eggs, sugar and extracts until fluffy. Combine the dry ingredients and fold them into the egg mixture. Cream the butter and fold it into the almond mixture. Spoon into a buttered springform pan and bake at 350 for 35-40 minutes. Cool on a rack and serve with a dusting of powdered sugar, whipped cream or fruit.
This almond cake looks remarkably plain. I think it “fa una brutta figura” – makes a bad impression – if you’re thinking of taking it to a party, but Jeff remembered having the dish at one of my dinner parties back in Pittsburgh. Hmm. Given the choice today, I much prefer torta caprese, the chocolate version of almond cake.