Husband Gerry and I, married 36 years, love it when our children and grandchildren visit. One cake that gets "oohs" and "aahs" from the family every time is this luscious torte. It's as light as a feather and tastes heavenly. Plus, it looks so beautiful, it's perfect for special occasions.
- 4 eggs, separated
- 1 cup ground hazelnuts
- 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 tablespoons water
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 cup sugar, divided
- 2 cups heavy whipping cream
- 1/4 cup confectioners' sugar
- 2/3 cup pureed canned apricots
- 1/2 cup apricot jam, warmed
- Whipped cream, sliced apricots and whole or chopped hazelnuts, optional
- Let eggs stand at room temperature for 30 minutes. Line two greased 9-in. round baking pans with waxed paper; grease the paper and set aside.
- In a bowl, combine the hazelnuts, flour, baking powder and salt; set aside. In a large bowl, beat the egg yolks, water and vanilla until lemon-colored. Gradually add 3/4 cup sugar; set aside.
- In a small bowl with clean beater, beat egg whites on medium speed until soft peaks form. Gradually add remaining sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, beating on high until stiff peaks form. Fold a fourth of the dry ingredients into egg yolk mixture. Repeat three times. Fold in egg white mixture.
- Spread batter evenly into prepared pans. Bake at 350° for 20-25 minutes or until cake springs back when lightly touched. Cool for 10 minutes before removing from pans to wire racks to cool completely.
- In a chilled large bowl, beat cream until it begins to thicken. Add confectioners' sugar; beat until stiff peaks form. Fold in apricots.
- Split each cake into two horizontal layers. Spread filling between layers and over sides of torte. Spread jam over top. Garnish with whipped cream, apricots and hazelnuts if desired. Store in refrigerator. Yield: 12-14 servings.
Originally published as Apricot Hazelnut Torte in Taste of Home December/January 2001, p27
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