Spring is in the air, and I head to my kitchen filled with thoughts of love.
Perhaps it’s the romantic long-stemmed French tulips of spring, or the seductive perfume of the season’s first strawberries that enliven my senses, or the allure of purple-tinged carrots piled high, dangling under the canopies at the farmers’ market that look like a still-life painting.
The lightness of spring gives way to the glamour of nature around its passion for love.
In the kitchen, we infuse this passion of love into our recipes. It could be a dessert, or a dish that will become a family favorite, or a romantic meal shared with loved ones around the table.
A lively bunch of carrots, mixed with a few ordinary ingredients will turn out a gorgeous Carrot Almond Torte that is truly spectacular. You’ll fall in love with it! Don’t even get me started. Trust me.
Made with tender sweet carrots, coconut, and almonds–it’s so rich and moist, it’s hard to believe it has no butter, and is gluten-free. If you want, drop a dollop of crème Chantilly on it. A thin layer of cream cheese icing would not be such a bad thing either, though personally, I like it au naturel.
It’s a perfect dessert for Passover, or afternoon tea, and if there is any leftover in the morning, it’s ok to indulge in a slice for breakfast.
In the spirit of love.
Carrot Almond Torte
4 large eggs, separated and at room temperature
¾ cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
Zest of 1 orange
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
2 cups carrots, peeled and grated
1/8 teaspoon cream of tartar
1 ½ cups ground almonds
1/2 cup coconut
9-inch springform pan with sides buttered.
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees with a rack in the middle.
Mix together the egg yolks, 3/4 cup of sugar, orange zest, salt, and almond extract. Sprinkle the grated carrots into the bowl, but don’t mix them in.
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, combine the egg whites and cream of tartar. Beat on medium until the whites hold a soft shape. Gradually sprinkle in the reserved two tablespoons of sugar, beating at high speed until the egg whites are stiff.
Scrape one quarter of the egg whites on top of the carrots and batter. Using a rubber spatula fold the whites and carrots into the batter. Scrape the remaining egg whites into the bowl and pour the ground almonds and coconut over them. Fold the egg whites, almonds, and coconut into the batter. Pour the batter into the prepared pan.
Bake for 45 minutes until the torte is golden brown. Cool the torte in the pan, on a rack.