CHOCOLATE ALMOND MERINGUE TORTE
Monday Morning Cooking Club
This outstanding recipe was first published in our most recent book, Now for Something Sweet from the kitchen of George Sternfeld. Our Jacqui Israel first met George – and his gorgeous array of bow ties – while volunteering at the Sydney Jewish Museum. We were all delighted to meet him when his family-favourite rack of veal was included in our third book. George’s passion to educate people through the lessons of history, his authentic love of cooking and his upbeat nature make him such a pleasure to know. We are in awe of his work at the Sydney Jewish Museum, and we also love his curiosity and exploration in the kitchen.
The poignant title of George’s book, Chocolate to Anzac Biscuits, best describes his life. From Warsaw to surviving the war in Siberia, to moving to Australia, George remembers his early life as one with very little food under the most trying circumstances. Now in Australia, he celebrates life and an ever-growing family, with wife Liz by his side.
This is his go-to Passover dessert, and George emailed us recently that on Pesach, he once again made this dessert cake, which was ‘devoured and likely to be reproduced next year by popular demand’. Unlike most layer cakes, this torte can be served as soon as it is made, or kept in the fridge for up to 2 days before serving.
Have a look at this short video of the making of this delicious torte.
meringue nut layer
4 egg whites
250 g (1 1/2 cups) icing (confectioners) sugar
1 tablespoon white vinegar
30 g (1/4 cup) unsweetened cocoa powder
75 g (1/2 cup) roasted almonds
600 ml (2 1/2 scant cups) thickened (whipping) cream
75 g (1/2 cup) roasted almonds, chopped
100 g (3 1/2 oz) best quality dark chocolate, coarsely ground
135 g (1 cup) raspberries
165 g (1 cup) blueberries
165 g (1 cup) strawberries, quartered
Preheat the oven to 150℃. Line 2 large baking trays. Trace 3 circles on the baking paper, approximately 20 cm in diameter.
To make the meringue nut layer, place the roasted almonds in a food processor and pulse until they are ground, and resemble breadcrumbs. In an electric mixer, whisk the egg whites until soft peaks form then slowly add the icing sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, while continuing to whisk. Whisk for 10 minutes or until stiff and glossy. Using a spatula, fold in the vinegar, cocoa powder and ground almonds.
Using a spatula, spread the mixture inside the marked outlines, smoothing out to the edges. Bake for 45 minutes or the disks are crisp to the touch. Place on a wire rack to cool completely.
To make the filling, whip the cream in a bowl until just soft peaks form and set aside. In a separate bowl combine the almonds and the chocolate. In a third bowl combine the berries.
To assemble the torte, place the first disk on a serving platter and top with 1/3 of the cream, 1/3 of the almond/chocolate mixture and 1/3 of the berries. Repeat with the remaining disks.
Serves 8 – 10
© Monday Morning Cooking Club 2022
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