This recipe is from Nigella Lawson’s Summer Forever cook book and it’s lovely. I haven’t for some reason made many of Nigella’s sweet dishes which is a shame, as the times I have, they’ve always come out very well. This cake is no exception. The white chocolate is quite subtle but with the addition of the almonds the cake has a lovely dense, almost marzipan quality to it. This cake is gluten free, relying on stiffly beaten egg whites for a little rise and it’s so nice to have an alternative gluten free cake that’s not the usual dark chocolate and almonds. Nigella suggests serving the cake with a side salad of fresh mangoes and raspberries dressed in some lime juice. The fruit pairs so well with the richly contrasting cake and adds a freshness and lightness which is very welcome if you’re serving this after a large meal. And whilst this cake makes an impressive dessert it would be just as good for morning or afternoon tea and the leftovers stay moist, for at least a few days if wrapped well.
Ingredients Adapted from Nigella Lawson, Forever Summer
175g white chocolate
150g unsalted butter, softened
100g caster sugar
6 large eggs, separated
150g ground almonds
Juice of 1 lime
Preheat oven to 180C. Grease and line a 23cm springform tin. Chop the chocolate and melt over simmering water or for a minute or two in the microwave, which is what I do. White chocolate will never melt to quite the smoothness of dark, so whenever it’s lost it’s shape, it’s melted enough; any more and it will start to seize. Put to one side.
Beat the butter until very soft, then add 50g of the sugar and cream again. Still beating, add the egg yolks one at a time, waiting until each one is incorporated before adding the next. Then slowly add in the cooled, melted chocolate, beating firmly as you do so. Once the chocolate is incorporated, add the ground almonds, beating again to mix.
In a large clean bowl whisk the egg whites till peaks being to form, then slowly add in the remain 50g sugar, until glossy and firm. Add a big dollop to the cake batter and stir well to lighten the mixture, then fold in the rest gently in three to four batches.
Pour the batter into the prepared tin, and bake for 45-50 minutes until cooked through. When the cake is ready it should be beginning to come away from the sides of the tin. You should check the cake after 30 minutes as you may need to cover the cake loosely with some foil to stop it burning. Remove from the oven and let it cool for 20 minutes before unspringing and inverting; then let it cool completely. Just before eating the cake, peel and dice the mangoes, as well as the juices from the skins, add the raspberries and the lime juice. Toss gently to combine and serve alongside the cake.