Fortnight's Five: Go Almond Crazy
Almonds in Five Ways
Beautifully sweet and in total abundance, with around 5m trees on the island, here’s some things you can do with your almonds that you pick up at this weekend’s almond fair at Santa Margalida.
Use the freshest and rawest almonds you can get your hands on, they must be unseasoned. Soak them overnight to ensure a smooth milk. Discard the soaking water and blend the nuts with four parts hot water to one part nuts. (100g almonds would mean 400ml water). Sieve the milk and flavour with honey a little salt, or infuse with cinnamon.
Using equal measures, roast and ground the fresh and raw almonds, combine with flour and icing sugar. Then use your hands to mix with lard. Make little balls and flatten them on the baking tray and bake in the middle of the oven at 170°C for 30 minutes.
It’s the cake on the counter at the local bakers and the cake option on the desert menu, the almond cake is ubiquitous and there are many recipes out there including Chef Rick Stein’s but the traditional recipe is quite unfussy, the most taxing is whisking the egg whites which make this cake so light and airy. Perfect when served with…
Almond Ice Cream
Ice cream makers are the way forward. Bring ground almonds, water and sugar slowly to the boil (along with some extras – cinnamon stick, lemon zest, for example). Once cooled transfer to your ice cream maker. If you don’t have a machine, put in the freezer and stir every hour. Or go to gelats valls.
Roast your own
Warm up some honey, a couple of tablespoons will do, with 50g butter, place your nuts (about 1kg) in a baking tray and pour over your mixture. Season with salt. Shake the tray to cover the nuts and roast in the oven for 20-30 minutes, giving the tray a nudge half way through to shake up the nuts. Cool, pour into a nice jar, tie with a ribbon and you have the perfect gift from Mallorca!