I would like to make the Apricot And Almond Cake but do not have a food processor. Can I make it using a cake mixer instead? Do I need to chop up the apricots as the cake mixer will not chop them up in the way a food processor would?
Nigella's Apricot And Almond Cake With Rosewater And Cardamom (from SIMPLY NIGELLA) is made with dried apricots that are cooked until soft then pureed in a food processor with the rest of the cake ingredients. If you do not have a food processor but have a hand or stick blender then you can chop the cooked apricots roughly (not forgetting to set aside 5 for the decoration first) and puree them in a goblet with the blender before using them. It may help if you add one or two of the eggs as well, as some extra liquid will help to keep the blade of the blender immersed and it will work more efficiently.
Otherwise it is possible to chop the apricots but you need to do this patiently with a sharp knife, until they are very finely chopped and almost a paste. And make sure you add add any cooking liquid left in the saucepan to the cake batter. To make the cake with a mixer, put the eggs and sugar into a large bowl (or the bowl of a stand mixer) and mix until the sugar starts to dissolve and the eggs are slightly foamy. Add the remaining ingredients and beat until you have a uniform batter. It will look a bit grainy from the polenta and almonds but should be slightly paler in colour. Scrape this batter into the prepared springform pan and bake following the instructions in the recipe.