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What Should The Consistency Of Apricot Almond Cake be? Can I Substitute Rosewater?

Asked by jendophil. Answered on 30th November 2015

Full question

What should the consistency of the Apricot Almond Cake be when cooked? Mine is not like a sponge but is more dense and moist. Is it best when baking cakes to use a food processor (as Nigella does with this cake) or a food mixer? I had never used a processor before for cake baking and am wondering whether this makes a difference to the consistency of the cake?

What can I use instead of rosewater in the Apricot Almond Cake? - Thank you, Ketsey.

Apricot Almond Cake With Rosewater and Cardamom
Photo by Keiko Oikawa
Apricot Almond Cake With Rosewater and Cardamom
By Nigella
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Our answer

Nigella's Apricot Almond Cake With Rosewater And Cardamom (from Simply Nigella and on the Nigella website) is a gluten-free cake made with ground almonds (almond meal) with a high proportion of eggs. Consequently it will not be light and spongy, but it should be dense and moist. It sounds as if the cake described has the correct texture. A food processor is good for this type of cake as the apricots need to be whizzed to a puree. For sponge cakes they can be made in a food processor, but as there is no air whisked into the butter they can benefit from having a little extra baking powder added to the mixture (usually a teaspoon extra for a standard 3-egg Victoria Sponge recipe).

Nigella uses rosewater in the cake as the flavour is very complementary to the apricots, almonds and cardamom. These ingredients are often used together in Middle Eastern cooking. Only a touch is used so the cake has a slight hint of exoticness and not a medicinal rosewater flavour. If you don't have rosewater then orange flower water would be a good substitute and if this is also tricky then a teaspoon of vanilla extract would work in the cake too.

PeachMelba Pavlova

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