Thursday, April 8, 2010

Thursday baking - Gateau aux Noix

Our challenge to bake our way through A Treasury of NZ Baking...
I decided to make this cake for us to eat on Easter Sunday. I loved the simple, sophisticated look of it in the book, with the glossy chocolate icing and perfect walnut halves, and I really like the texture of cakes with ground nuts in them instead of flour. With fresh walnuts being in season and therefore plentiful and cheap at the moment, it seemed like a good time to make it.

My only quibble with the recipe was the ingredient list stating '2 slices of white bread' were required, from which you are instructed to make the breadcrumbs that go into it. Libby recently gave me a copy of 'The Pedant in the Kitchen', an amusing little book, the author of which would have a field day with this instruction. While I wouldn't usually consider myself a pedant in the kitchen, this lack of precision was a bit annoying. The kitchen scales were out to measure the other ingredients so why couldn't the breadcrumbs just have been listed by weight too?! Anyway, I used some baguette as we otherwise only had Vogels, and used 8 slices, figuring the small rounds would equate to '2 slices of bread'. In hindsight it was probably a few too many breadcrumbs, as although the cake was moist it was a little crumbly.

Pedantic comments aside, this cake was quite delicious. The flavour of the lemon zest came through quite strongly which was nice. The chocolate icing added richness, but overall the cake tasted rather elegant and understated, just as it looks.

Week Two: Gateau aux Noix (Peta Mathias)

2 slices of bread
150g butter, soft
100g sugar
4 eggs, separated
zest of 1 lemon
150g walnuts, ground
pinch salt
25g sugar (extra)

100g dark chocolate
30g butter
walnut halves

Preheat oven to 150c. Toast the bread in the oven till dry, then grind up in a food processor.

Grease a 23cm round cake tin, dust it with flour, and line the base with baking paper.

Cream the butter and first measure of sugar, then beat in the egg yolks one by one, beating in well.
Stir in the lemon zest, breadcrumbs and walnuts.
In another bowl whip the egg whites and salt until they form stiff peaks. Add the extra sugar and beat for another minute. Fold this into the cake mixture and pour into the tin.
Bake for 45 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean and the sides of the cake pull away slightly from the tin edge. Cool in the tin.

To make the icing gently heat the chocolate and butter together and mix till smooth.
This cake will keep for 4 days.

1 comment:

  1. Lovely photography, and I love the smooth swirly look of the icing.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...