Last month, one of my very good friends got married. It was very exciting! Especially as my friend very kindly asked me to help with the wedding favours and make a gluten-free dessert. I was quite surprised when she asked me. As much as I love baking, I sometimes don’t have the confidence that what I can do will be good enough, or will live up to what people want. My friend however, had complete confidence in me. This particular friend has been so very supportive of what I have been doing lately, and her support has meant so much to me.
Working with my friend and her lovely mother on this order was lots of fun and really enjoyable. We tossed up a few ideas for the favours, and ended up landing on the rosewater and cardamom macaroons that I make. I liked this option as they are gluten and dairy free so all the wedding guests could enjoy them, and as almonds are a traditional bonbonniere gift I thought this was a nice link. My friend had a fantastic stamp made for her wedding, to use for the invitations and order of service, so we used this as the front of the label for the favours. I think the stamp was the best part of the favours! It looked fantastic and was a nice link to all the other elements of the wedding.
Thanks so much again to my wonderful friend. I so appreciate your support and for giving me an opportunity to be part of your wedding. Congratulations to you and your husband!
Here is the recipe for the gluten free dessert I made for the wedding. It was a really nice torte to make and I am definitely looking forward to making it again soon. The original recipe used all dark chocolate. I changed it a little to include milk chocolate as well, as I often find dark chocolate too bitter.
* this recipe needs to be started the day before serving.
250 g whole blanched almonds
150 g milk chocolate, broken into pieces
100 g dark chocolate, broken into pieces
6 egg whites
115 g caster sugar
250 g pitted dates, finely chopped
100 g milk chocolate
80 g dark chocolate
250 ml whipped cream
Pre-heat oven to 180 degrees Celsius. Grease and line a 24 cm springform cake tin.
Place the almonds and chocolate in a food processor and lightly blend. You still want small chunks of almonds and chocolate.
In a separate bowl, whisk the egg whites until soft peaks form. Gradually add the sugar, and whisk until the whites are thick and glossy.
Gently fold the almonds, chocolate and the chopped dates into the egg white mixture. Pour mixture into prepared tin, smooth the top if necessary. Bake for 45 minutes.
Once the torte is cooked leave in the oven, turn the oven off, and leave the oven door propped open. Leave torte in the oven until completely cool.
Once the torte has cooled, remove from the tin and place on a large plate or platter. Refrigerate overnight.
The next day, melt the remaining chocolate in a heatproof bowl over a small amount of simmering water (the water should not touch the bottom of the bowl).
Allow the melted chocolate to cool a little, then drizzle over the cake.
Serve with whipped cream.
Original Recipe from ‘Monday Morning Cooking Club - The Feast Goes On’ by Lisa Goldberg, Merelyn Frank Chalmers, Natanya Eskin, Lauren Fink, Paula Horwitz and Jacqui Israel, p.187 (Harper Collins, 2014).
Originally Posted October 9, 2014.