I came-up with an Italian version of the Greek Honey-Walnut Cake that I made some time ago.
Instead of shortening, I used olive oil and changed the technique with the nuts and added some different flavorings. This cake was moist and delicious.
Hazelnut and Orange Honey Cake
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup shelled hazelnuts, * toasted and ground
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon cinnamon
½ teaspoon salt
¾ cups sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1/3 cup olive oil
1 Tablespoon orange zest (1 large orange)
2 tablespoons orange juice (from the orange that you zested)
1/4 cup milk
Honey Syrup (recipe follows)
- Grease and flour a square 9x9x2 inch pan.
- In a food processor or blender, add the cooled hazelnuts, pulse on and off until you have a fine powder. Add flour, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt. Pulse for about 20 seconds. Set aside.
- In a medium-size bowl; with a hand mixer on high-speed, beat the egg and sugar until thick and pale (about 2 minutes). Add the vanilla, olive oil, orange zest and orange juice and mix just until blended.
- Add the flour mixture to the wet ingredients and mix on low-speed until combined then continue mixing on med-high speed for 1 minute, scraping sides of bowl often.
- Pour into prepared pan and bake in preheated oven until wooden toothpick comes out clean, 25-30 minutes
- Cool cake in pan for 10 minutes. Put cake onto a plate right side-up. Cool for another 15 minutes. Slice the top of cake (1/8 inch deep) into diamond pattern; spoon syrup evenly over top of cake.
- Preheat oven to 350° F.
- Put hazelnuts in a baking pan and toast in oven for 10 to 15 minutes. They should be lightly colored and the skins should blister. Wrap nuts in a kitchen towel and rub in towel to remove loose skins (don’t worry if some of the skins don’t come off). Cool completely.
- ¼ cup sugar
- ¼ cup water
- ¼ cup honey
- 1 tablespoon orange juice
Heat sugar, water and honey in a small sauce pan to boiling; reduce heat.
Simmer uncovered for 5 minutes.
Stir in orange juice.