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Pomegranate Jewel Cake

by . Featured in FEAST
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Introduction

Many cultures use food that resembles money – lentils for coins, saffron for gold – in celebratory meals, to invoke a wish for prosperity and good fortune ahead, and this fragrant, light, flourless almond cake with its tumble of gleaming, rubied pomegranate seeds is my version: an open jewel-case of a cake.

Many cultures use food that resembles money – lentils for coins, saffron for gold – in celebratory meals, to invoke a wish for prosperity and good fortune ahead, and this fragrant, light, flourless almond cake with its tumble of gleaming, rubied pomegranate seeds is my version: an open jewel-case of a cake.

Pomegranate Jewel Cake
Photo by James Merrell

Ingredients

Serves: 10

Metric Cups

For the Cake

  • 8 eggs
  • pinch of salt
  • 300 grams caster sugar
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • zest of 1 orange
  • 300 grams ground almonds

To Finish

  • 2 pomegranates

For the Cake

  • 8 eggs
  • pinch of salt
  • 1½ cups superfine sugar
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • zest of 1 orange
  • 3 cups almond meal

To Finish

  • 2 pomegranates

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to gas mark 4/180°C/160°C Fan/350°F. Grease and line a 23cm/9 inch springform tin.
  2. Separate the eggs, putting the whites into a large grease-free bowl, and the yolks into a separate bowl. Whisk the egg whites with a pinch of salt until they are stiff but not dry and then whisk in 100g/½ cup of sugar before putting them to one side.
  3. Add the remaining 200g/1 cup sugar and zest to the yolks and beat until the mixture is light and airy (I use the flat paddle of the KitchenAid mixer for this), then beat in the ground almonds. This will be very thick and heavy, so lighten it with a good dollop of whisked egg whites before folding the rest of them into the mortar-thick, yellow almond mixture: I find it easiest to fold in the remaining egg whites in thirds. You need to workfirmly, but gently, so everything is well combined without the mixture losing its air. Don’t be too cautious, though: cooking, like children, picks up on lack of confidence.
  4. Pour into the lined and greased tin and bake for about 40 minutes, though check at 30 as you don’t want this to scorch. If the cake is brown enough, while still gooey in the middle, loosely cover with a sheet of foil.
  5. As soon as the cake comes out of the oven, juice one of the pomegranates and pour the juice over the cake while it is still hot and in its tin.
  6. Let the cake cool and absorb the pomegranate juice and leave until cold before unspringing from the tin. Place the cake on a stand or plate, and then cut the other pomegranate in half and bash out the seeds over the cake.
  1. Preheat the oven to gas mark 4/180°C/160°C Fan/350°F. Grease and line a 23cm/9 inch springform tin.
  2. Separate the eggs, putting the whites into a large grease-free bowl, and the yolks into a separate bowl. Whisk the egg whites with a pinch of salt until they are stiff but not dry and then whisk in 100g/½ cup of sugar before putting them to one side.
  3. Add the remaining 200g/1 cup sugar and zest to the yolks and beat until the mixture is light and airy (I use the flat paddle of the KitchenAid mixer for this), then beat in the almond meal. This will be very thick and heavy, so lighten it with a good dollop of whisked egg whites before folding the rest of them into the mortar-thick, yellow almond mixture: I find it easiest to fold in the remaining egg whites in thirds. You need to workfirmly, but gently, so everything is well combined without the mixture losing its air. Don’t be too cautious, though: cooking, like children, picks up on lack of confidence.
  4. Pour into the lined and greased tin and bake for about 40 minutes, though check at 30 as you don’t want this to scorch. If the cake is brown enough, while still gooey in the middle, loosely cover with a sheet of foil.
  5. As soon as the cake comes out of the oven, juice one of the pomegranates and pour the juice over the cake while it is still hot and in its tin.
  6. Let the cake cool and absorb the pomegranate juice and leave until cold before unspringing from the tin. Place the cake on a stand or plate, and then cut the other pomegranate in half and bash out the seeds over the cake.

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What 1 Other has said

  • Absolutely delicious, and really quite easy to make (possibly except squeezing the pomegranate juice, but that's only because our blender is broken). Very moist, and looks beautiful. Made this for a dinner party with a lactose intolerant guest, and served it with cream for those who can eat dairy

    Posted by rosie47 on 31st January 2017
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