Torta di Grana Saraceno
Also called Schwartzplantentorten, Buchweizen Kuchen, or Tyrolean Buckwheat Torta
Prep: 1 hour Bake: 45 mins Serves: 10
We first tasted this cake in the Italian Dolomites at Rifugio Tierser Alpl Hutte near Bolzano, but then found it at the Schlern Haus, at a bakery in Castelrotto, Bressanone, and elsewhere throughout Sud Tirol.
6 eggs, separated
2 sticks + 2 Tablespoons butter at room temperature (250 grams)
1 cup + 2 Tablespoons sugar (250 grams)
1 pkg vanilla sugar (~ 1 Tbsp) (such as Dr. Oetker)
2 cups buckwheat flour (250 grams)
2 1/4 cups almond meal/flour (250 grams)
sifted powdered sugar
About 1 1/2 cups lingonberry preserves
1 cup whipping cream, beaten with 2 packets vanilla sugar (or 2 Tbsp powdered sugar plus ½ tsp vanilla) until soft peaks form. Refrigerate until serving.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees with rack in middle. Spray a 10-inch springform pan with vegetable spray.
In mixing bowl, beat egg whites until stiff; set aside.
In a separate mixing bowl, beat butter until light and fluffy. Add sugar and vanilla sugar, beat until smooth and creamy. Add egg yolks and beat to combine. Add buckwheat flour and almond meal/flour, beat at low speed until combined. This will be very dense.
Fold about a cup of the egg whites into the buckwheat mixture and gently lift from the bottom to combine. Don’t stir it or the air bubbles will pop and the cake will be hard as a rock. Add another cup of egg whites and continue to do this until all is combined. Spread in prepared pan and smooth the top. Bake 40-45 minutes until toothpick inserted near center comes out clean. Set on wire rack for 5-10 minutes, then remove from pan and set on wire rack to cool.
When completely cool, use sharp knife to slice the cake into two layers. Place the bottom layer on cake plate and spread lingonberry jam on top, extending to the edge of the cake. Top with some of the whipped cream. Dust with powdered sugar. Serve slice of cake with remaining whipped cream aside.