Summer Celebration Cake - Torta
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
A twist on the traditional chiffon cake giving it a gentle almond scent. The cake itself is dairy free making it perfect for dairy sensitive dessert lovers and those observing Kosher dietary laws which prohibit the mixing of meat and dairy. The instructions are lengthy and detailed only to make this basic process clear.
Recipe type: Dessert - Dolce
Serves: 12 generous servings
  • 2½ cups of non-rising cake flour
  • 1 Tbs. of baking powder
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • 6 large egg yolks, room temperature
  • 6 large egg whites, room temperature
  • ¼ tsp. cream of tartar
  • 1 cup plus ⅓ cup of superfine sugar
  • ½ cup of corn oil
  • 1 Tbs. pure vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp. pure almond extract
  • ¾ cup of unsweetened, unflavored almond milk
  • 1 cup of sliced almonds
  • 2 Tbs. granulated sugar
  • 1 Tbs. butter
  • 2 pints fresh strawberries
  • 2 Tbs. granulated sugar
  • 1 Tbs. Grappa
  • 2 cups well chilled heavy cream
  • 1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
  • 2 Tbs. confectioners sugar
  1. Place a rack in the lower third of the oven, preheat the oven to 325ยบ. Have an ungreased angel food pan ready.
  2. Combine the cake flour, baking powder and salt in a sifter; sift the dry ingredients together three times.
  3. Place the egg yolks in the work bowl of a standing mixer; beat on high for 2 to 3 minutes, stopping the mixer midway to scrap down the sides of the work bowl. Begin to add the 1 cup of superfine sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time; scrape down the work bowl several times during this process.
  4. Adjust the mixer speed to medium-low and begin to drizzle the corn oil into the beaten egg yolks. Add the vanilla and almond extracts, scrape down the bowl and beat for an additional minute.
  5. Alternate adding the dry ingredients in three parts and the wet ingredients in two parts to the yolks. When adding the dry ingredients, first gently combine with a spatula before turning on the mixer (this will prevent the carefully measured & sifted dry ingredients from flying all over the kitchen). Mix both the dry and wet ingredients only until the batter becomes homogeneous; being certain to scrape down the bowl after each addition. Set aside.
  6. Using clean beaters and a new work bowl, beat the egg whites on medium high speed until frothy, then add the cream of tarter. Continue to beat on high and once the whites have achieved the soft peak stage, begin to add the ⅓ cup of superfine sugar - one tablespoon at a time. Beat until the egg white are thick and glossy.
  7. The egg yolk mixture will be quite thick, in order to lighten it before the final folding of the egg whites, add about ¾ of a cup of the yolk mixture to the egg whites. Using a large rubber spatula, gently fold the two together, always starting at the bottom of the bowl. Turn the bowl as you continue to fold until the yolks have been completely incorporated into the whites.
  8. Scrape the egg white mixture which now has the addition of some of the yolks, into the original egg yolk mixture, folding and turning in the same manner. Once there is not trace of white or yolk, gently pour the cake batter into the angel food pan turning the pan as you pour so it is even.
  9. Have a large bottle set on the counter to invert the cake onto for cooling once it comes out of the oven.
  10. Place the pan into the center of the oven and bake for 40 minutes before opening the oven to test the cake. The cake is ready when the top is quite golden and the surface springs back when gently touched. Depending upon your oven, the cake will take anywhere from 40 to 60 minutes. Once the cake is ready, using oven mitts remove the pan and immediately invert onto the neck of the bottle. Allow the cake to cool completely in this position.
  11. Once the cake is completely cool, using a sharp knife release the cake from the sides of the pan. Pressing the knife blade along the edge of the pan as you go around the circumference is an excellent way to approach this. Pull up the center of the pan up and remove the cake from the sides of the angel food pan. Using the knife repeat the process around the neck and bottom of the pan. Turn the cake out onto the counter.
  12. Slice the cake into three layers, using a ruler to measure accurately around the sides of the cake. Mark this with toothpicks to serve as a guide for slicing. Gently stabilize the cake with your hand and using a serrated knife slice the cake into the defined three layers. You may wrap and freeze the cake at this point to save for a later date.
  13. Place a large mixing bowl and the beaters of your mixer into the refrigerator for the whipping the heavy cream at a later point.
  14. Place a piece of waxed paper or Silpat on the counter. Melt the 1 tablespoon of butter in a small skillet; once foaming add the sliced almonds, stirring constantly until lightly golden. Add the 2 tablespoons of granulated sugar and continue to stir until the sugar has lightly caramelized the almonds. At this point immediately turn onto the waxed paper or Silpat. Spread into a single layer and allow to cool completely.
  15. Wash and pat dry the strawberries. Using one pint, remove the stem and slice the berries into thirds. Place the slices into a bowl with the 2 tablespoons of granulated sugar and Grappa; stir gently and macerate for one hour. Reserve the second pint of whole, clean strawberries for completing the cake.
  16. Pour the heavy cream into the chilled mixing bowl along with the confectioner's sugar and beat until soft peaks form; add the vanilla and continue to beat until the cream just reaches a firm peak stage - refrigerate.
  17. Select a cake plate to serve Summer Celebration Cake on and dot with two tablespoons of the whipped cream, place the bottom layer on the plate (the whip cream will help stabilize the cake on the plate)
  18. Spoon ½ of the sliced strawberries and their juice onto the bottom layer. Top the strawberries with ⅓ of the whipped cream. Carefully place the second layer over the whipped cream, pressing gently to insure that it is secure. Repeat with the strawberries and whipped cream and add the top layer of the cake. Spoon the remaining whipped cream over the top of the cake and decorate the top and cake plate with the whole strawberries. Delicately arrange the caramelized almond pieces over the whipped cream and around the edges of the cake plate.
  19. The cake is best serves within 4 to 5 hours of being completed.
Recipe by LaBellaSorella at