It was only when I looked over the recipe for this Cradle Cake from Rose's Heavenly Cakes by Rose Levy Beranbaum that I realized that this cake may not look impressive, but possessed more of an inner beauty. The name comes from the layer of crisp nutty dacquoise, a mixture of ground pecans, chocolate and whipped egg whites, that encases or cradles the moist inner white cake.
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Once I put the batter for this Gâteau Breton into the pan and in the oven it was only a matter of minutes before an intoxicating began to fill my kitchen. It was a sweet mix of sugar, eggs, and almonds that brought to mind freshly baked almond croissants.
Rose Levy Beranbaum created this cake for Campbell's soup and explains in the recipe's introduction that the tomato soup adds both color and a zing to the cake. She also claims that no one can ever guess what the mystery ingredient is when she brings it to a party. So is it fantastic or kind of foul? I had to try it out for myself.
The first bite of tres leches cake that Rose Levy Beranbaum tasted stopped her in her tracks—it was one of the best things she had ever tasted. Coming from a woman who has written volumes on the subject of cake, this proclamation is not to be taken lightly. And if you've ever experienced the sweet joy that is tres leches cake, I'm sure you know exactly what she's talking about.