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Apr 2, 2014 10:51 AM

Baking/Cake substitution question please?

I want to make this cake in a couple weeks for Passover. It calls for walnuts, but I have a big bag of whole shelled almonds in the freezer. Do you think I can just grind up the almonds and substitute them for the walnuts? Thanks!

Passover Chocolate Walnut Cake

For the cake:
8 ounces (2 sticks) unsalted butter, plus extra for pan
1/2 cup matzo cake meal, plus extra, for flouring the pan
8 ounces semisweet chocolate
5 eggs
3 egg yolks
3 tablespoons sugar
7 ounces (about 2 1/3 cups) finely ground walnuts
For the frosting:
1/2 cup egg whites (from about 4 eggs)
1/2 cup sugar
8 ounces (2 sticks) cold unsalted butter, cut into pieces
1 ounce unsweetened chocolate, melted
2 teaspoons cold brewed coffee
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Butter a 10-inch round cake pan and line the bottom with waxed or parchment paper. Flour the sides of the pan with matzo cake meal.

In the top of a double boiler set over barely simmering water, melt the butter and chocolate together, stirring frequently. Set aside to cool slightly.

In a mixer fitted with a whisk attachment (or using a hand mixer), whip the eggs, egg yolks, and sugar until very light and fluffy. Fold in the hot chocolate mixture.

In a small bowl, mix the matzo meal and ground walnuts. Fold into the chocolate-egg mixture. Pour into the prepared pan and bake until firm and dry on the top and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out almost clean (a few crumbs are OK), about 35 to 40 minutes.

Let cool 20 minutes in the pan, then turn out onto a rack and let cool to room temperature. Transfer to a serving plate and refrigerate 1 hour.

Meanwhile, make the frosting: In the top of a double boiler set over barely simmering water, whisk the egg whites and sugar together until the mixture is very hot and the sugar has dissolved somewhat. Remove from the heat and whip the mixture in a mixer (or using a hand mixer) until cooled, smooth, and fluffy. Add the butter and whip until smooth; the mixture might look broken at this point, but keep whipping and it will smooth out.

Drizzle in the melted chocolate and coffee, and whip until smooth and fluffy. Using a flexible spatula, frost the chilled cake on the top and sides.

Serve immediately or refrigerate up to 24 hours. Remove from the refrigerator 1 hour before serving.

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  1. I would actually prefer it with the almonds. :-)

    Use whatever amount of almonds will give you 7 oz. ground and put a little bit of the sugar or cake meal from the recipe into the processor with the nuts. That will help prevent you from turning into almond butter.

    3 Replies
    1. re: rockycat

      "Use whatever amount of almonds will give you 7 oz. ground"

      The great thing about weight measurements vs. only volume in instances like this is, 7 oz whole almonds = 7 oz ground almonds. (I particularly appreciate this when a recipe calls for a different form than I have on hand; if what ultimately goes in is ground, if weight is given, it doesn't matter whether the recipe specifies whole, slivered, sliced, or ground almonds - they're all interchangeable. Same for different nuts.)

      1. re: Caitlin McGrath

        What I meant was "use how ever many CUPS that will give you 7 oz. ground." Not everyone is used to baking by weight rather than volume, although ultimately it is so much easier.

      2. re: rockycat

        I love almonds and hate walnuts, so I'd sub in a second. :D

      3. I don't see why replacing walnuts with almonds wouldn't work. They both are nuts. Go for it!

        1. I think almonds will be fine.
          Most Passover cakes are not made with butter.

          1. Yes. Nuts are mostly interchangeable.