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Decadent Chocolate Almond Cake with Sour Cream Icing

(Yields 6–8 Servings)


4 ounces high-quality semisweet chocolate, melted
2 tablespoons ground coffee granules
1 stick unsalted butter, softened, cut into ½-inch cubes
1 cup granulated sugar
3 egg yolks
1 teaspoon bourbon vanilla extract
3 egg whites
1 teaspoon kosher salt
½ cup crushed almonds
½ teaspoon almond extract
½ cup cake flour, sifted

8 ounces high-quality semisweet chocolate, chopped
1 teaspoon instant espresso powder
1¼ cups sour cream, at room temperature
½ cup corn syrup
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract


1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Butter and flour one 8-inch round baking pan.
2. Place chocolate and ground coffee in the top of a double boiler. Stir until chocolate is
thoroughly melted, then remove from heat.
3. Cream together the butter and sugar for several minutes until they form a pale fluffy
4. In a small bowl, beat together egg yolks with vanilla extract, then add to butter-sugar
mixture and thoroughly combine.
5. In another small bowl, beat the egg whites and salt together until soft peaks are formed.
6. Pour the melted chocolate into the buttersugar mixture and thoroughly mix. Then mix in almonds and almond extract. Immediately stir in a quarter of the egg-white mixture so as to lighten the cake. Then mix in the cake flour in small amounts, alternating with the rest of the egg whites.
7. Turn the batter into the cake pan, then bake in preheated oven for 25–30 minutes. Cake
is done when it has puffed and a toothpick inserted around the circumference comes out clean while another stuck in the middle comes out slightly oily.
8. Allow cake to cool for 15 minutes. Loosen cake rim with a knife, then reverse onto a cooling rack. Allow to thoroughly cool for 1–2 hours, then ice with icing.
9. To make icing: Mix together the chocolate and espresso powder in the top of a doubleboiler.
Stir until chocolate is melted. Remove from heat and let chocolate cool until tepid.
10. In a medium-sized bowl, mix together the sour cream, corn syrup, salt, and vanilla extract. Slowly add chocolate and stir quickly until the mixture is uniform. Let cool in refrigerator until the frosting is a spreadable consistency, no more than 25 minutes. Spread over cake with a spatula, then decorate with a design of chopped almonds.

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