Italian Chocolate Almond Torte

Are you stressed out of your mind? Have you tried napping / working out / meditation / a good stiff drink or various combinations thereof? It is time to stop "dealing with it" and start baking. Yes, I speak from experience. As an antidote, may I suggest,
Alice Medrich's Italian Chocolate Almond Torte. I swear the woman has done more for me than my health care providers have or ever will. Thank god for Alice.

Heres what I did:
1. Ground up 6 oz chocolate, a pinch of salt, 1.25 cups unblanched almond meal and 1/4 cup sugar. Of all the hair-brained things I've done, reducing chocolate in a recipe is the most heinous. Do not err on the side of miserly. Be generous.
2. Whisked 7 egg whites, a quarter cup sugar and 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar to stiff peaks. I used organic cane sugar but plain white sugar will probably do just as well.
3. Fold the almond mixture into the eggs. Do not overmix.
4. Bake in a spring form pan lined with parchment paper at 350 degrees F for 25-30 minutes. The center takes longest to be done. The cake cooks a little as it cools. It is best inverted etc after its has cooled completely.

The verdict:
I loved the recipe because its all nuts, chocolate and eggs. No oil, no butter. The butter in the chocolate and nuts are put to good use. Its a light, fluffy cake. Great texture from the eggs and almond meal. I cut down on the sugar so my version is not very sweet. Perfect balance of chocolate and nuts. Works great with iced coffee. I'm sure I will make this one many times over and will likely up the ante and use fancier chocolate to take things up a notch, especially if I'm making it for company. But for now, this is just right. Full of style and substance, satisfying in every way. Alice never fails. The nerves, formerly a jangled mess, have been restored to a chocolate-induced zen state.

Update: I'm quite in love with this recipe. It has been quite a success whenever I've made it. It goes to Mansi for Healthy Cooking and to Sangeeth for Eat Healthy - Protein Rich.


Suganya said...

This is SCARY. I too made this yesterday :D. Well, for the third time, I should say ;)

Asha said...

When I am stressed, I eat savory snacks like Kodubale and chaklis!!!;D

Looks good, stressed or not, great dessert to have. YUM! Enjoy your weekend Smita!:)

Mallika said...

Funny you ask, but I tried yoga again yesterday. If you're recommending baking... the torte looks divine!

Traveling Tummy said...

Haha, yes I can relate to the calming effects of baking! Chocolate and almonds, one of my favorite combos!

delhibelle said...

what a wicked looking torte! love your blue dish too.

David said...

Yes, please do not stint on the chocolate!!! I am a strong believer that chocolate (real chocolate please, dark and bittersweet, not those ersatz pretenders that go by the names of milk chocolate or white chocolate - ugh) is a universal specific, good for mind and body, in good health or in ill health. There is a reason for the name of theobroma cacao after all! More power to you Smita!

Mansi Desai said...

ooh, that does look sinfully delicious Smita! and what a grea way to reduce stress:) thanks so much for sending it my way!

ServesYouRight said...

Suganya - You have good taste ;-)

Asha - Thats funny! I used ot be a 'chakli monster' too :-)

Mallika - Baking is just another form of sadhana (insert some other such profound-sounding inanity to segue back to CHOCOLATE!!)

TT - Can't argue with you there :-)

Delhibelle - Thank you :-)

David - Many thanks!

Mansi - You're welcome! Many thanks for hosting!