March 2014

March 2014

Monday, July 14, 2014

Healthier almond and citrus cake

Healthier almond and citrus cake
Since just after last Christmas, when I bought it in Waitrose for a satisfyingly low £1, I have had a tin of Amaretti Virginia in my store cupboard. I just love the beautiful bright red tin and have since discovered that these tasty little Italian almond biscuits – a cousin of the French macaron – have been made by the Virginia company in Liguria since 1860. Sadly, I happened to notice the other day that the croccanti (crunchy) version I had bought was nearing the sell-by date – presumably why it had been reduced - and so they needed using up!

My ‘Healthier almond and citrus cake’ containing amaretti biscuits proved to be just the ticket. Here’s how I made it…..

For the cake:
200g Flora (or other low-fat spread)
10 tablespoons (20g) Splenda (or other sugar alternative)
3 large eggs - separated
Finely grated zest of 2 lemons and juice of 1
200g ground almonds
2 teaspoons baking powder
9 or so amaretti biscuits

To serve:
Small quantity icing sugar
Low fat creme fraiche, yoghurt or ice cream

Line a 20cm loose-bottomed tin and preheat oven to 190C/170C fan/gas 5.

Cream together Flora and Splenda and then blend in egg yolks. Add lemon zest, lemon juice, ground almonds and baking powder - mix well together. 

In a separate bowl, whisk egg whites until light and fluffy. Gently add these to the cake mix in 3 batches (being careful not to knock out the air from the whites).

Cake mix topped with chopped amaretti
Spread half the mixture into the cake tin and then add the amaretti (chopped into large chunks or left whole if preferred).

Spoon the remaining mix over, smoothing the surface.

Transfer to the oven and bake for 30 - 35 minutes until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. 

When baked, leave for 5 minutes in tin and then turn out to cool.

Shortly before serving, dust with icing sugar. This will keep for several days in an airtight container.

Ready for serving