Honey Almond Brittle Cake
Posted by: Mai Wed, 17 Mar 2004, at 12:46 p.m.
2 1/2 cups cake flour
1/2 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup unsalted butter (1 1/2 sticks) at room temperature
1 1/4 cups sugar
4 large eggs, at room temperature
1 cup buttermilk, at room temperature
1/2 tablespoon vanilla extract
Honey Almond Brittle
1/2 cup granulated sugar
3 tablespoons honey
1 1/2 tablespoons water
2 ounces slivered almonds (about 1/2 cup), toasted
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1/8 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup milk
3 large egg yolks
1/3 cup granulated sugar
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/3 cup heavy whipping cream
1 tablespoon confectioners' sugar
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease two 8-by-2-inch round cake pans.
For the cake: Sift the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt together into
a bowl and set aside.
Cream the butter and sugar in a large bowl with an electric mixer at medium
speed until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Reduce the speed to medium-low.
Add the eggs, one at a time, beating 30 seconds between additions. Add
alternating increments of the flour mixture and buttermilk and vanilla, blending
well after each addition; this should take about 3 to 5 minutes.
Divide the batter evenly between the prepared pans. Bake for about 30 minutes,
until a cake tester comes out clean. Cool in pans, on wire racks, for 10
minutes, unmold the cakes and let cool completely. Note: The cake recipe makes
two 8-inch round cake layers. Only one is used for this recipe.
To make the brittle: Combine the granulated sugar, honey and water in a
medium-sized saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring to dissolve
sugar. Boil, without stirring, until the mixture turns a deep amber color, about
10 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and immediately stir in the toasted
almonds, butter and baking soda. Mix with a wooden spoon just until the butter
melts and the foaming subsides. Pour the mixture into a nonstick or lightly
greased baking sheet and set aside to cool. Once the brittle has hardened, break
it up and crush to fine crumbs in a food processor. Store in a covered container
in the refrigerator until ready to use.
To make the custard cream: In a heavy saucepan over medium- low heat, heat milk
to barely simmering. Meanwhile, combine egg yolks, sugar and cornstarch in a
medium mixing bowl. Whisk to blend smoothly. Stir the heated milk into the egg
mixture; return mixture to saucepan. Bring back to a boil, over medium-low heat,
whisking constantly; boil 1 minute. Remove pan from heat; add butter and
vanilla, stirring to melt the butter. Transfer custard to a bowl; place a piece
of waxed paper directly on top to prevent a crust from forming and refrigerate
Whip the cream and confectioners' sugar until stiff peaks form. Fold into the
chilled custard and refrigerate until ready to use.
To assemble cake: Cut the cake in half horizontally. Place one layer on a cake
plate, spread cake with cold custard cream and sprinkle with brittle crumbs.
Cover with the remaining layer of cake. Spread the remaining custard cream over
cake, applying a thinner coat to the sides, then the top. Chill for a least 1
hour before garnishing.
To garnish, press brittle crumbs onto the sides of the cake with the palm of
your hand and sprinkle a layer of crumbs on the top. Refrigerate until ready to
Note: To toast nuts, arrange in a single layer on a baking pan. Bake in a
375-degree oven until golden brown, about 7 to 10 minutes. Allow nuts to cool