Huguenot Torte

Huguenot Torte

Baking notes:

The original Huguenot torte is made with apples and pecans. If you'd like to make that version, replace the cherries with 1 apple, peeled, cored, and chopped (it should yield 1/2 to 3/4 cup) and the hazelnuts with 1/2 cup toasted pecans, chopped.

The most efficient way to remove hazelnuts' unpleasantly bitter skins is to blanch them. Bring 4 cups water and 1/4 cup baking soda to boil in a large pot. Add the hazelnuts and boil 4 minutes. Drain the hazelnuts in a colander and rinse them under cold running water for 1 minute. Transfer the hazelnuts to a clean kitchen towel (one you're not attached to as it will stain) and rub the skins off. Place the skinned hazelnuts in a rimmed baking sheet and bake in a 350°F oven until golden brown and fragrant, about 15 minutes.

  • Yield:6 to 8
  • Active time: 20 minutes
  • Total time:1 hour, 5 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup jarred pitted sour cherries, plus 1/2 cup liquid
  • 1 tablespoon plus 3/4 cup sugar
  • Salt
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1/3 cup hazelnuts, skinned, toasted, and coarsely chopped (see notes above)
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 cup crème fraîche (optional)

Directions

  1. 1.

    Bring cherries, cherry liquid, 1 tablespoon sugar, and pinch of salt to boil in a small saucepan. Reduce heat to medium and simmer until liquid is thick and syrupy, 8 to 10 minutes. Transfer to plate and cool to room temperature.

  2. 2.

    Meanwhile, adjust oven rack to middle position and preheat oven to 325˚F. Grease 9-inch pie plate.

  3. 3.

    Beat egg, lemon juice, and 1/4 teaspoon salt with electric mixer on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 1 minute. Gradually beat in remaining 3/4 cup sugar and beat until mixture is thick and pale yellow in color, 1 to 2 minutes.

  4. 4.

    With rubber spatula, fold in cherries and hazelnuts. Fold in vanilla, flour, and baking powder and pour into prepared pie plate.

  5. 5.

    Bake 45 minutes, until sunken and crusty. Serve warm with (optional) crème fraîche.