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Thursday, May 05, 2005 

Feliz Cinco De Mayo!

Posted by Hello Happy Cinco de Mayo! To celebrate, let's highlight a wonderful recipe from Douglas Rodriguez's Latin Flavors book (although he is Cuban and not Mexican).
This pound cake recipe is a to die for recipe on ANY holiday....

Cherry Almond Pound Cake
(serves 12)

1/4 cup amaretto liqueur
1 cup coarsely chopped dried cherries
3 cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 ounces almond paste, at room temperature
2 1/2 cups sugar
1 1/4 cups unsalted butter
6 eggs
1/2 teaspoon bitter almond extract (or substitute almond extract)
1 cup sour cream

2 tablespoons amaretto liqueur
1 1/2 cups confectioners sugar

About 2 hours before you are ready to bake, heat the amaretto in a small saucepan. Add the dried cherries. Let cool, stirring occasionally, until the cherries have soaked up all the liquid.

Preheat the oven to 325F. Butter and flour a 10-inch Bundt pan, tapping out an excess flour.

Sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.

In a large mixing bowl fitted with a paddle, combine the almond paste and sugar. Beat on low speed until well combined and the mixture looks like wet sand. Add the butter and beat at medium speed until very fluffy, about 3 minutes. Scrape down the bowl with a rubber spatula and add the almond extract and the eggs, one by one, beating only until they are well blended.

Beating on low speed, add a third of the dry ingredients and a third of the sour cream. Do this twice more with the remaining dry ingredients and sour cream, scraping the bowl with a rubber spatula. Finally, beat the batter for about 20 seconds, until it is smooth looking. By hand, fold in the cherries until they are well distributed in the batter.

Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Level the top with a spatula and tap the pan gently on the counter to settle the batter evenly.

Bake for 50-60 minutes until the top is browned and feels springy and a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.

Allow the cake to cool in the pan for 20 minutes, then turn it out onto a wire rack to finish cooling.

Make the glaze while the cake is cooling. Sift the confectioners sugar into a small bowl and slowly blend in the amaretto with a fork until the mixture is smooth.

Drizzle the cake with the glaze while the cake is still warm.

That sounds terrific! I wish I would have had that recipe earlier, I'm having some people over for Mexican today for Cinco de Mayo!

Thanks for the cookbook tip - don't have that one and The Husband is Cuban, so it'll be worth it to pick it up. Like your blog -- I'll put up a link for you on mine.

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