My freezer is a repository of odds and ends, a treasure chest packed with the promise of delicious culinary endeavors to come.
Rinds from parmesan wedges saved for hearty vegetable soup pots in the days ahead.
Over-ripe bananas tucked away for spur-of-the-moment banana bread-baking.
Heels of bread for making crumbs to dredge chicken thighs in.
And for this recipe.
“Raspberry Almond Bars” appealed to me because they make use of almond flour (also found copiously tucked away in my freezer) and bread crumbs. In fact, there’s no need to measure out any all-purpose flour because the batter gets its foundation from the former two ingredients, plus a generous amount of eggs. The recipe calls for 6 extra large eggs. Since I only buy large ones, I just upped the number of those to 7 for this recipe. It also calls for superfine sugar. You can just whirl regular granulated in a food processor to make it finer. Or truth be told, I just used the regular granulated as is without a problem.
The recipe is by Annie Bell, a former food writer for Vogue and the Independent in the United Kingdom. It’s from her cookbook, “Annie Bell’s Baking Bible” (Kyle), of which I received a review copy.
It highlights summer’s fresh raspberries. The cake bakes up light, fluffy and moist with the fresh berries hidden within and the bread crumbs adding a larger crumb structure.
Cut a square to enjoy for breakfast, brunch, dessert or a snack anytime of day.
It’s a perfect destination for that leftover bread taking up space in the freezer.
Raspberry Almond Bars
(Makes 12 squares)
2 1/3 cups almond flour
1/3 cup sliced almonds
1 1/3 cups superfine sugar or regular granulated sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder, sifted
1 1/3 cups fresh white bread crumbs
6 extra large eggs or 7 large eggs
1 1/4 cups sunflower or vegetable oil
Finely grated zest of 2 oranges
4 ounces fresh raspberries
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees convection or 400 degrees conventional oven. Grease a 9-by-12-inch nonstick baking pan, 2 inches deep, with vegetable oil.
Mix the ground and sliced almonds, 1 cup of the superfine sugar, baking powder, and bread crumbs together in a large bowl. Beat in the eggs thoroughly using a wooden spoon, and then the oil. Finally, stir in the orange zest.
Transfer mixture to the prepared pan and smooth the surface. Scatter over the raspberries and sprinkle with the remaining sugar. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes until the cake is golden and a skewer inserted into the center comes out clean. Run a knife around the edge of the cake and leave to cool in the pan before cutting into squares or slices.
Adapted from “Annie Bell’s Baking Bible” by Annie Bell
More Summer Fruit Recipes: Ricotta Biscuits with Dried Cherries, Apricots and Raspberries