Monday, April 5, 2010

Heavenly Cake Bakers: Pecan Torte with Coffee Cream

It's an excellent thing when the foremost authority on cake in the US is also a New York Jew. Not only is her cradle taste sensibility delightfully Eastern European--cream, levkar, coffee, etc...but her repertoire includes many flourless or flour light cakes suitable for Passover, and Marie at Heavenly Cake Place has kindly included two of these for the posting dates that fall on Passover this year.

I made this week's cake, the Pecan Torte with Coffee (Whipped) Cream, and it was very good, and seemed to sell well at the bakery, but this post will be a little conflicted because although pictures are scanty, my heart belongs to the Chocolate Featherbed cake I made for our actual Passover seder on Tuesday.
Still, although still dreaming of mounds of souffle chocolate and whipped cream, I didn't stint on the Pecan Torte, which consists largely of toasted pecans ground fine, sugar, and eggs whipped high. Working at the bakery early in the morning allows me to bake relatively free of distractions, so while I sometimes do odd things just because of the inattention of exhaustion, I am actually much more precise and conscientious than I usually am at home. And I take more pictures, of each step.

The eggs, separated.
The pan, filled and smoothed.
The cooled cake, unmolded and re-inverted. The deep grooves don't matter because it will be covered in coffee whipped cream. I considered frosting the bottom of the cake, with also sunk slightly into an attractive shallow depression like store-bought 'shortcake,' but in the end went with Rose's program because the cake widened at the base.
The whipped cream was a few steps, softening the gelatin, whipping with instant coffee, etc...but all in all the assembly was simple. This is a purist's cake, dark and light-textured and strong flavored. Miriam came by the bakery and ate it for breakfast, laughing as another girl wandered in to ask if we had any breakfast pastry.
I doubt that many Passover-observant Jews wander hopefully into the bakeries of my neighborhood, but someone liked the cake--about 2/3rds were gone when I strolled by around 4pm.


evil cake lady said...

the chocolate featherbed is one of the cakes i've been eyeing since i got the book...can't wait until we bake it!

Jenn said...

Lovely photos and write up. I love Rose, she is exposing me to all the cakes that I've never heard of before.

Catherine said...

miriam knows how to party.