Esterhazy torte

Serves 10 people

Nuts, vanilla and a light fruity flavour make this torte a favourite. It's named after Crown Prince Esterhazy, of Hungary, who was also a famous poet.

Ingredients
  • 150g hazelnuts, toasted and skinned
  • 150g blanched almonds
  • 300g caster sugar
  • 6 egg whites
  • ½ tsp cream of tartar
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 vanilla bean, seeds scraped
  • 2 Tbsp cornflour
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 250g unsalted butter, softened
  • ½ cup kirsch
  • ½ cup apricot jam
  • 1 cup pure icing sugar
  • 1 Tbsp glucose syrup
  • 50g dark chocolate, melted
  • ¾ cup flaked almonds, toasted
Instructions

1 Preheat oven to 180°C. Combine the hazelnuts, almonds and 75g caster sugar in the bowl of a food processor and pulse until fine crumbs form.

2 Combine the egg whites and cream of tartar in the bowl of an electric mixer and whisk on high speed until soft peaks form. Add 125g caster sugar, 1 Tbsp at a time, and continue whisking until stiff peaks form. Fold in the nut mixture.

3 Pipe six 22cm discs on lined oven trays and bake for 18-20 minutes, until golden and firm to touch. Set aside to cool.

4 Whisk ½ cup milk, vanilla seeds, cornflour, yolks and remaining caster sugar into a medium saucepan and set over a moderate heat. Cook until thickened, then whisk in the remaining milk. Transfer to the bowl of an electric mixer and beat with the whisk attachment for 5 minutes, until cooled. Increase speed to high and add the butter 1 Tbsp at a time. Beat until smooth, then fold in 2 Tbsp kirsch.

5 Boil the apricot jam, then brush onto the cake discs. Set aside until firm. Assemble the layers with kirsch buttercream between, finishing with a cake disc.

6 Combine the icing sugar with 1 Tbsp water and glucose in a small saucepan and cook over a moderate heat until 92°C. Ladle over the cake top then drizzle the chocolate in a spiral pattern. Use a toothpick to create a feathered effect.

7 Press the flaked almonds onto the sides of the cake, then serve.