I call this my ‘Ten Minute Torte’ because it’s a cake to slot in the oven, whilst the kettle is on. The kind of cake I like to have on the go, when I need an excuse for a screen break. In the time it takes to make a cup of tea, I can have this Italian marvel baking quietly in the oven.
This is a cake of generous proportion and is not made to be stacked. Dust down your 25cm cake tin and line it well. I chose a vegan ganache, to include my dairy free daughter. Whipped cream, tumbled with berries would sit just as well. As would eating it bare and feeling prim.
Dairy and gluten free. Vegan-ish, as some would say.
225g neutral oil (I used sunflower oil. This does work with olive oil, but makes for a heavier crumb)
275g sugar (Yup, I used coconut sugar, my current ingredient crush)
5 eggs, large
150g ground almonds
75g desiccated coconut
1tsp baking powder (check if gluten free – most are, as blended with rice flour)
Good pinch of salt
190g just boiled water
For the ganache
50g coconut oil, melted
50g maple syrup
Pinch of salt
Vanilla paste to taste
Set your oven to 170c and line your tin.
Using a stand mixer, whisk the sugar, oil and eggs together for a good five minutes, until the mix is light in colour and aerated.
Meanwhile, combine the almonds, coconut, cocoa and baking powder with a pinch of salt. Set to one side.
Measure the just boiled water into a separate bowl, so that it may cool a little.
Once the egg mix looks like sea foam, switch to the paddle attachment on the stand mixer and tip in the dry ingredients. Beat to combine.
With the motor running low, slowly pour in the cooling water and beat to combine.
Tip into your baking tin and bake for 45-50 minutes. After 20 minutes, cover with a loose fitting foil hood to prevent the cake from catching. For the last 5 minutes of baking, remove the hood to get a final set. You may check that the cake is cooked by inserting a clean blade, or as the Italians, a piece of dry spaghetti. However, the blade will not remove entirely clean as the torte continues to set whilst it cools.
Allow the cake to cool completely in the tin.
To dress, tip the cake upside down onto a plate. This will give you a level finish.
To make the ganache, simply mix the ingredients together well with a spatula. The mix will thicken as the coconut oil cools.
Carefully smooth over the torte and dress, if you wish, with berries of your choice.