The English Kitchen: Macaroon Loaf

I am sharing a lovely teatime treat with you today in the form of a beautiful sweet loaf cake!  This is a vanilla cake with a tasty almond macaroon filling.  NOM NOM NOM!

This is actually a recipe I have promised myself to bake since 1986!  It only took me thirty two years!  I can’t believe that, but its true!  Why did I wait so long! 

The year is 1986 and I am a young mum, aged 31 with four children and a fifth one on the way.  I buy my very first store purchased baking book.  I have never owned a cookbook like this before.  I remember it being a bit of a bargain. Our local book shop used to have a table of books with prices cut every now and then.  This was on that table.

You all know of the fondness I have for red and white toadstools.  I bought this book on the strength of this recipe alone . . . Dainty Toadstools.  A vanilla sugar cookie topped with sweet cherries and blanched almonds, decorated to look toadstools.  I wanted to make them for my middle son’s nursery school Christmas party. (This was before nut allergies, etc.)   I did make them, and they were a hit.

I have had this recipe for Macaroon Loaf flagged ever since.  The photo in the book looked incredibly delicious.  It was a bit faffy however, and I never quite got around to it.  It involved making a regular cake batter and then making an almond macaroon batter and then filling the centre of the unbaked cake with that same filling. 

Our almond meal over here is made from blanched almonds, which is why it looks white instead of toasty brown.  Not quite the look given in the loaf in the book, but I can promise you it is quite delicious nevertheless! 

As I said filling it with the macaroon filling was a bit faffy, but not un-doable. You just need to be persistent.  I am a stubborn person and was not going to let it defeat me  . . . 

As fast as I made the trough for the filling the cake would start filling the trough in.  I kept at it however, and although I did not get a truly deep trough of macaroon filling  . . .

I did get some . . .  as you can see, not deep and more or less kind of spread somewhat over the top, but quite delicious . . .  I promise you!

This is the kind of cake that begs to be enjoyed with copious cups of hot steaming tea.  I love the red fruit herbal teas myself, but peppermint is also nice. 

Mmmm . . .  it was very good.  Just don’t over bake it or it will end up dry.  This is one of those stodgy almost pound cake types of cakes.  Break out the kettle and start warming the tea pot. You are going to love this!

Yield: Makes 1 large loaf

Macaroon Loaf

prep time: 15 minscook time: 1 hourtotal time: 1 hours and 15 mins

A delicious vanilla cake with an almond macaroon filling which baked right into the cake.

ingredients:

For the cake:

180g softened butter (3/4 cup)

125g granulated sugar (2/3 cup)

2 large free range eggs

2 large free range egg yolks

1 tsp vanilla extract

280g plain flour (2 cup)

1/2 tsp salt

2 tsp baking powder

120ml milk (1/2 cup)

For the macaroon filling:

2 large free range egg whites

43g icing sugar, sifted (1/3 cup)

85g ground almonds (1 cup, almond meal)

1/2 tsp almond extract

instructions:

Preheat the oven to 165*C/325*F/ gas mark 3.  Butter a 9 by 5 inch loaf tin and line with paper.  Set aside.

Cream
 together the butter, sugar, eggs, egg yolks and vanilla for the cake
until creamy.  Sift together the flour, baking powder and salt.  Add to
the creamed mixture alternately with the milk.  spread the batter into
the prepared loaf tin.

Whisk the egg whites
until stiff but not dry.  Sift in the powdered sugar and beat until
thick and glossy and stiff.  Fold in the almond extract and almonds. 
Using the back of a spoon make a deep trough, two inches wide, down the
middle of the batter in the pan. Spoon the almond mixture into the
trough. (This is the hard part, but be persistent.) 

Bake
 for 60 to 65 minutes until risen and a toothpick inserted in the centre
 comes out clean.  Leave to cool in the pan for 10 minutes, then lift
out and leave to cool completely on a wire rack.  Cut into slices to
serve.

As I sit here this morning, I am thinking that this would also be very nice spread with some jam.  Just saying  . . .  Happy Sunday and Bon Appetit! 

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Author: alexbyu

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