April 10, 2008
Chef Akasha adds fresh twist to holiday traditions
(Page 2 - Previous Page)Makes four servings.
Akasha's Passover Chocolate Torte
1/3 cup chopped hazelnuts or almonds
3 tablespoons matzah cake meal
2 1/2 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped fine
1/3 cup Dutch processed unsweetened cocoa powder
3/4 cup sugar
1/3 cup water
1 tablespoon strong coffee
2 egg yolks
4 egg whites or 1/2 cup liquid egg whites
1/4 cup sugar
Kosher-for-Passover confectioners sugar
Fresh strawberries or raspberries for serving
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line an 8-inch round springform pan or removable-bottom cake pan with parchment paper and grease with oil, or grease an eight-cup muffin pan with oil. Grind the nuts with the matzah cake meal in a food processor until very fine.
Combine the chopped chocolate, cocoa powder and three-quarters cup sugar in a medium bowl. Heat the water and coffee in a small saucepan to scalding. Remove from the heat, pour it over the chocolate, and whisk until the mixture is completely smooth. Stir in the egg yolks.
With a handheld or free-standing electric mixer, beat the egg whites on medium speed until soft peaks form. Gradually add the remaining one-quarter cup sugar, and continue to beat until stiff but not dry. Fold the nut mixture into the chocolate. Fold a quarter of the egg whites in with a rubber spatula to lighten the mixture; then fold in the rest.
Scrape the batter into the pan and smooth to the edges with the rubber spatula. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes. Don't over bake, or it will dry out.
Cool torte on a rack. Slide a butter knife around the sides to release the torte. Remove the sides of the pan, invert the pan, remove the paper liner from the bottom and turn the torte right side up onto a cake platter or large plate.
Dust with the powdered sugar and serve with fresh berries.
Makes one (9-inch) torte or eight individual tortes.
Judy Zeidler is the author of "The Gourmet Jewish Cook" (Morrow, 1988) and "The International Deli Cookbook (Chronicle, 1994). "Judy's Kitchen" appears on Jewish Life Television. Her Web site is www.judyzeidler.com.
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