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Blog

Almond Shamah Chiffon Cake

Patricia Reitz

ButterYum Almond Shamah Chiffon Cake
ButterYum Almond Shamah Chiffon Cake

Here's my entry for the latest Heavenly Cake Bakers selection... an Almond Shamah Chiffon Cake, filled and frosted with raspberry whipped cream.

This cake has a lot of steps, but it's simple when you break it down.

Here we go...

Blanching almonds nuts ButterYum
Blanching almonds nuts ButterYum

Start by toasting and grinding some blanched almonds. I didn't have any blanched almonds in the house, so I blanched my own by boiling skin-on almonds in water for about a minute...

blanching almonds nuts ButterYum
blanching almonds nuts ButterYum

...then plunged them into ice water to stop the cooking process. At this point it's really easy to remove the skins by giving the almonds a gentle squeeze.

toasting almonds nuts ButterYum
toasting almonds nuts ButterYum

Now we toast the almonds in a 350F oven for about 7 minutes.

making almond flour ButterYum
making almond flour ButterYum

When the almonds are cool, grind them in a food processor with a bit of flour, which keeps them from getting oily.

dry ingredients in food processor ButterYum
dry ingredients in food processor ButterYum

Add the remaining flour and baking powder, process for a few seconds; set aside.

whip egg yolks and sugar together ButterYum
whip egg yolks and sugar together ButterYum

Now we whip the egg yolks and 1/2 the sugar for 5 minutes....

ribbon stage ButterYum
ribbon stage ButterYum

...until they look like this. Add the oil, water, and the two extracts; mix. Sprinkle the reserved ground nut/flour mixture on top if the yolk mixture; set aside.

add cream of tartar when whites are foamy ButterYum
add cream of tartar when whites are foamy ButterYum

Now we make the meringue. Beat egg whites on med speed until foamy. Add cream of tartar and whip until soft peaks form.

soft peaks ButterYum
soft peaks ButterYum

Soft peaks achieved. Time to slowly beat in the remaining sugar until the whites are glossy and they form "stiff peaks with slight curves".

egg whites stiff peaks ButterYum
egg whites stiff peaks ButterYum

Done.

making a chiffon cake ButterYum
making a chiffon cake ButterYum

Now we make the batter by folding the meringue into the reserved egg yolk/ground nut mixture.

pulls away from the sides of the pan ButterYum
pulls away from the sides of the pan ButterYum

Pour batter into 2 prepared 9" pans and bake until the cake tests done in the center and the sides start shrinking away from the pan. The pans were sprayed with Baker's Joy and lined with parchment rounds. No insulated baking strips were needed for this cake.

flip a cooling cake ButterYum
flip a cooling cake ButterYum

The structure of this particular cake recipe requires that you immediately turn them out of the pan and invert them to the right-side-up position. This is easy to do if you have extra cooling racks. Once the cake is right-side-up, remove the top cooling rack and cool completely.

making simple syrup or soaking syrup ButterYum
making simple syrup or soaking syrup ButterYum

Now we make the yummy soaking syrup. Boil water and sugar until sugar is completely dissolved; remove from the heat.

applying the syrup ButterYum spraying
applying the syrup ButterYum spraying

Cool syrup completely and add Amaretto. You should have one cup of Amaretto syrup. We're going to add 1/4 cup of syrup to each side of both cake layers. Most people would use a pastry brush to do this, but...

ButterYum Almond Shamah Chiffon Cake
ButterYum Almond Shamah Chiffon Cake

I saw a pastry chef on TV syrup a cake using a spray bottle once, so I bought one to try today. I'm happy to report that I loved using it. I was able to spray the syrup on very evenly, and completely avoided all the extra crumbs that dragging a pastry brush across the cake would have created.

If you'd like to give this trick a try, be sure to wash the spray bottle out with hot soapy water and rinse well before using. Set the nozzle somewhere in the middle between "spray" and "stream". Use long, even squirts. I found it helpful to tilt the cake a bit when doing this.

raspberry whipped cream ButterYum
raspberry whipped cream ButterYum

Are you still with me? We're almost done.

Time to make the Raspberry Whipped Cream.

raspberry jam whipped cream ButterYum
raspberry jam whipped cream ButterYum

My seedless raspberry jam was a not-so-appetizing shade of beige-ish pink, so I added a few drops of red food coloring to brighten it up.

simple cake decoration ButterYum
simple cake decoration ButterYum

Ah yes, MUCH better.

I piped a border and dotted it with wild raspberries I had stashed away in the freezer.

ButterYum Almond Shamah Chiffon Cake
ButterYum Almond Shamah Chiffon Cake

Would you care to stay for a spot of tea?

:)

Helpful Hint:

make your own grease proof cardboard rounds ButterYum
make your own grease proof cardboard rounds ButterYum

I found this cake required a lot of "flipping" of the layers, done with the help of a lot of extra cardboard cake rounds. Since the layers were wet and sticky, I covered my non-water and grease proof cardboard rounds with a protective layer of Press'n Seal.

Once I was done assembling the cake, I was able to peel the press'n seal off, revealing pristine cardboard rounds that can be used again.

how to grease proof cake boards ButterYum
how to grease proof cake boards ButterYum

Place the Press'n Seal, sticky side up, on the counter. Place upside down cardboard round in place and wrap/press the extra onto the brown backside of the cardboard. Now your round is completely water and greese proof. The press'n seal is easily removed when you're done with it.

Happy Baking!