Saturday, October 27, 2012

Walnut Sponge Cake-Flourless and Delicious

I made this wonderful cake at work as a base for the gorgonzola gelato I wrote about here, it is one of those cakes I can't stop eating and it gets better the next day, so it deserves a post of its own.  The recipe comes from Pure Desserts, written by one of the Bay Area most accomplished cookbook authors, Alice Medrich, and you can see the original picture of the cake on her website.  Her recipes are amazing, and she uses some of my favorite ingredients like cocoa nibs, buckwheat flour, saffron, cardamom, you name it.  

Now that I know I am gluten intolerant and work in a restaurant I always try to have one or two desserts on the menu that are gluten free.  This cake was first suggested to me years ago by a coworker as we were talking about the Pure Dessert book and some of our favorites recipes.  I liked it then, but when I made it recently I realized how truly outstanding this recipe is.  This cake surprised me for its simplicity and amazing taste, and it is so light and the lemon flavor intensifies the next day, you can serve it simply sprinkled with some powder sugar or with some whipped cream.  Alice Medrich suggests to make it with pecans as well.

Walnut Sponge Cake
from Alice Medrich

2 1/2 cups (10 ounces) walnut pieces
5 large eggs, separated
Zest of one lemon
1 tbs vanilla extract
1/3 cup plus 1/4 cup sugar
1/8 tsp salt

Preheat the oven to 325F.  Line an 8" springform pan with parchment paper.
Coarsely chop 1/2 cup of the nuts.  In a food processor process the remaining nuts until fine.  Combine the nuts and set aside.
Whip the yolks with 1/3 cup of sugar until pale yellow, add the lemon zest, vanilla, and salt.
Whip the whites until foamy, then gradually add the 1/4 cup of sugar until soft peaks form.
Add half of the whites to the yolks, then cover with half the nuts.
Gently fold the ingredients until incorporated, then fold in the rest of the nuts and egg whites.
Pour the batter into the prepared pan, and cook in the pre-heated oven until a toothpick comes out clean, 50-55 minutes.
Cool 5 to 10 minutes then remove from the cake pan.



Martissima said...

mi piace un sacco questa ricetta, la metto subito tra le ricette da provare....ciauzzzz

Ilva said...

ok, I try again, I left a comment here the other day ... beautiful cake and very interesting recipe that i need to bookmark.

Laura said...

Marti, fammi sapere come ti piace la torta quando la provi.

Ilva, I didn't see the other comment, weird. I hope you get to try this recipe, it is really good.

Sandra said...

Laura, this cake looks so yummy! I don't think I have made flourless cakes before. Re blog comments: your last comment to my blog was in my spam folder! Weird. But I rescued it. :)

Rosa's Yummy Yums said...

Mmmmh, it looks exquisite. I love walnuts, so this sponge cake is for me.



Sara said...

Love love love this cake! I love having some gf recipes in my arsenal for friends and also baking for church when I don't know who will be showing up. This one looks amazing! :)

Sherrie Huang said...

A flourless sponge? With walnuts? Sounds so delicious! And it looks fantastic too :D

Sarah said...

This looks delicious! And especially good for gluten free eaters!

restaurant Mumbai said...

lovely cake with walnuts....very good Sponge cake having all different tastes

Kelly {Sparkles and Shoes} said...

This looks and sounds unbelievably delicious, yum!

Sparkles and Shoes

maria at inredningsvis said...

WOWWWW that looks SO YUMMY mmm:) your blog is my addiction now haha

Check out one of my Swedish fav. recipies in the link above:)

Have a wonderful day dear

LOVE Maria at inredningsvis - The Swedish home decor blog

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