Almond Tart, Food and drink

Almond Tart

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I first ate Almond Tart at O Cantinho restaurant in Carvoeiro. The combination of light sponge and nutty caramel topping was so good I was determined to recreate it when I got home. However, the first one I made, for a dinner party, had a topping more like an almond brittle than the soft caramel I had experienced in O Cantinho and my guests nearly broke their teeth on it. I have experimented with the recipe since then and after several attempts have now perfected a version that is very similar to O Cantinho’s. This recipe has a very light sponge topped with sliced almonds in a caramel sauce. It can be eaten on its own or served with crème fraiche or vanilla ice-cream.

Ingredients

Cake:

120g self-raising flour

150g granulated sugar

½ teaspoon baking powder

¼ teaspoon salt

1 egg

100 ml plain yoghurt

20 ml milk

½ teaspoon vanilla extract

80g melted butter, cooled to room temperature

Almond Caramel Sauce:

150g granulated sugar

15 ml water

40g butter

100 ml single cream

40 ml golden syrup

⅛ tsp salt

100g sliced almonds

 

Method

  • Preheat oven to 180°C
  • Combine flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Set aside.
  • Beat egg, yoghurt, milk and vanilla extract together until smooth. Stir in melted butter.
  • Add flour mixture and mix with spoon until nearly smooth.
  • Turn into a buttered 23 cm spring form cake tin.
  • Bake until centre of cake springs back when lightly touched, about 35 minutes.
  • Remove from oven.
Make the Almond Caramel Sauce:
  • Heat 75g sugar with 15 ml water in a pan until it turns a rich reddish brown.
  • Remove the pan from the heat and add the butter.
  • Add the remaining sugar, golden syrup, cream and salt.
  • Return to the heat and bring to the boil, watching that it doesn’t boil over.
  • Reduce the heat slightly and simmer for 4-5 minutes or until it reaches 130°C on a sugar thermometer.
  • Remove from the heat and stir the sliced almonds into the sauce.
  • Pour the sauce over the cake (still in the cake tin) while still hot and spread evenly.
  • Grill about 15 cm from heat until almonds are lightly toasted.
  • Cool on rack for 15 minutes.
  • Using knife or spatula, loosen sides between pan and cake, then cool completely before releasing the spring form cake tin.

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