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Category: Desserts

Hazelnut torte with bourbon-flavored whipped cream

Hazelnut torte with bourbon-flavored whipped cream
Ricardo DeAratanha / Los Angeles Times

We tend to talk about seasons as if the year were a house with four separate rooms. You walk through a connecting door and slam it shut behind you. The reality is subtler, closer to a meandering hallway with no ... Read more

Total time: 1 1/2 hours | Serves 10 to 12
Note: This is adapted from one of my favorite baking books, Lindsey Shere's "Chez Panisse Desserts.".

Cake

  • 1 3/4 cups hazelnuts (about 8 ounces)
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 6 eggs
  • 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Step 1Toast the hazelnuts in a 350-degree oven until they smell nutty, about 8 minutes. While they are still warm, rub them with a damp towel to remove as much of the peel as possible. Let cool. Reduce the oven temperature to 300 degrees.

Step 2Grind the hazelnuts in a nut grater and toss lightly with the flour (this can be done in a food processor, but the texture won't be as fine). You should have about 2 cups of grated nuts. Reserve 1 tablespoon to use as garnish.

Step 3Butter and flour a 9-inch springform pan. Separate the eggs and beat the yolks with half the sugar until they hold a 1-second ribbon, about 1 minute with a hand-held mixer. Warm the egg whites over hot water or swirl them above a gas flame until barely warm, then remove from the heat and beat, using clean beaters, with the cream of tartar and salt until they just hold stiff peaks.

Step 4Beat the remaining sugar into the egg whites until the whites hold stiff peaks again. Drizzle the vanilla over the egg-white "sand." Spread the egg yolk mixture over that.

Step 5Sprinkle one-fourth of the nut mixture over the yolks and partly fold together. Sprinkle on another fourth of the nuts and partly fold them in. Continue until all the nuts have been added and fold them in completely.

Step 6Spread evenly in the prepared pan and bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 50 to 55 minutes. Cool in the pan and then remove the sides. Frost thickly with bourbon-flavored whipped cream and sprinkle with reserved nuts.

Bourbon-flavored whipped cream

  • 1 cup whipping cream
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons bourbon

Step 1While the cake is cooling, beat the whipping cream until it holds soft peaks.

Step 2Whisk in the sugar and bourbon.

Each of 12 servings:
283 calories; 6 grams protein; 17 grams carbohydrates; 2 grams fiber; 22 grams fat; 6 grams saturated fat; 133 mg. cholesterol; 63 mg. sodium.
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