I’m contemplating making this the 2nd Apple Crumbles signature dessert. It was fun inventing this absolutely luscious dessert. If you enjoy the sweet taste of almond, this ones for you. Let’s get started.
The Soft Sugar Cookie Base: This will make 8 cookies.
- 4 cups all purpose flour
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/2 lb (2 sticks) Unsalted butter, softened
- 2 cups sugar
- 2 tsp almond extract
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 3 eggs
- 1 cup whole milk
- Wilton “Sports Ball” Cake Pan (or you can use a small metal mixing bowl)
Preheat the oven to 375 F. Line cookie sheet (you will need 4 of them)with parchment or foil or use Silpat sheets (my fav!).
Combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt. In another large bowl, combine the butter and sugar – mix well. Add the extracts. Put the eggs in a measuring cup and lightly beat, then add to your sugar/butter mixture. Add the flour mixture a little at a time.
Using your baking bowl for the cake, which might be the Wilton Ball pan or a small metal mixing bowl, spread enough cookie mixture on your baking sheet to equal the diameter of your the cake baking bowl. I believe it’s approx. 5″ to 6″ in diameter. You should get 8 large cookies.
Bake about 20 minutes or until slightly brown on top. You will want to trim your cookie to the exact size of your desired cake.
At this point you can freeze these little babies or go to step two:
The Almond Cake: This will yield 8 tortes
Now don’t think this is a lame shortcut, because your finished cake will by no means taste like a box mix, but I want you to use one. The ingredients for the cake:
Preheat oven to 350 F. Grease (or non stick spray) your pans well.
- 8 oz Almond Paste
- 6 large eggs
- 4 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 tsp almond extract
- 2 sticks butter (partially melted)
- 16 oz sour cream
- 2 Yellow Cake mixes
Beat together the first 2 ingredients. Add the extracts. Add the butter. Beat in the sour cream. Sift in your cake mixes (or at least mix them up with a fork to get rid of clumps). Blend just until incorporated.
Pour into cake pans, leaving about 1 1/2 ” – 2″ from top (if using Wilton pans). Put in oven, turn temp. down to 325 and bake 50 – 60 minutes. Until a knive comes out clean. Now you will have to wait until the cakes cook, remove, clean pans, and pour more cake in to bake for round 2. Repeat until you get 8 cakes or the desired amount.
Make The Rum Wash:
You can freeze your cakes with your cookies if you’ve had enough by now. But you can also make this RUM WASH a week or so in advance. It’s a sugar -water mix and will keep safely in your fridge for 2 weeks or so.
- 1 1/2 cups Sugar
- 1 1/2 cups water
- 1/2 cup Rum
Bring the sugar and water to a boil. Let rapid boil for 3 minutes. Remove from heat and add your rum. The alcohol will be lost due to the heat, but the wonderful flavor will remain.
At this point, you will need to be prepared to finish your tortes. We will make the Pignoli Finish for your torte.
16 oz Almond Paste
4 egg whites, slightly beaten
1 tsp Almond Extract
1 1/2 to 2 cups confectioners sugar
Preheat oven to 425 F.
Line cookie sheets with parchment.
Beat the almond paste to tenderize it a bit. Add half of your egg whites. Beat about 2 minutes. Add 1/3 of your sugar and beat about 2 minutes. Scrape the sides of the bowl and add more sugar until it’s all beaten in. Now add the rest of your whites. It should be thick so that it holds form somewhat. You can add more sugar if needed.
Transfer to a pastry bag …. and get ready to finish those Tortes!
Torte Assembly and Finishing.
You’ve already lined your baking sheets. You will need the following:
- Your cookies
- Your cakes
- Your rum wash
- Apricot Preserves or your choice
- Sliced almonds
Now, place your cookie on the lined sheets – 2 per baking sheet. Spread apricot preserves over cookie.
Slice your cakes 2 times, so you have 3 tiers.
Put the bottom tier of your cake on top of the cookie which has been spread with preserves. Now use your rum wash and brush it over the cake layer.