Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Almond Lover's Birthday Cake

Someone in my house dearly loves almonds. This is his birthday cake.

Chocolate Almond Mocha Cake:

2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 cup unsweetened cocoa (I use and recommend Ghiradelli unsweetened)
2 tsp baking soda
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
2 tsp pure almond extract
2 tsp decaf or regular instant coffee granules
4 large eggs, beaten
2 cups sugar
1 and 1/2 cups oil (I use and recommend Mazola Corn Plus with Omega 3's)
2 cups unsweetened applesauce

Vanilla Almond Buttercream:

1 cup superfine sugar (or 2 cups powdered)
1 cup unsalted margarine, softened
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1 tsp pure almond extract
sliced almonds for garnish

Preheat oven to 350ºF. Mix first five ingredients together and set aside. Beat eggs, sugar, almond extract, coffee granules and oil until light in color. Add, alternately, dry ingredients and applesauce, mixing between each addition. Greasing only the bottom of the pan with a small amount of oil or spray, pour until half full into round or square pans. Bake for 1 hour or less, depending on the size of the pan, until dry in center. This cake also may be baked in muffin tins, 8”x 8” pans, small loaf pans, etc. The baking time will be shorter if you use smaller pans or muffin tins, so keep an eye on them. The cakes are done when the centers are no longer wobbly.

To make the buttercream, make sure the butter is softened, and place it in a mixer with the sugar. Mix thoroughly and add the extracts one at a time. When everything is incorporated, set mixer to the highest setting and mix for approximately 10 minutes, or until the frosting color has lightened at least one shade.

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