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Italian Almond Cake

Sliced almond cake covered with flaked almonds on a white platter.

5 from 5 reviews

This divine Italian almond cake - torta Elvezia - is made with almond-meringue layers (almond dacquoise) alternated with buttercream and sliced almonds. Serving up to 12 people, the cake makes a perfect celebration. What's more? It is gluten-free!


For the dacquoise:
  • 1 cup + 3 1/2 tablespoons (300 g) egg whites (see note #1)
  • 2/3 cup + 2 1/2 tablespoons (185 g) caster sugar
  • 2 2/3 cups + 4 tablespoons (280 g) almond flour
  • 2/3 cup + 4 tablespoons (205 g) caster sugar
  • 7 1/2 tablespoons (75 g) rice flour
For the buttercream:
  • 2/3 cup + 3 1/2 tablespoons (200 g) granulated sugar
  • 6 1/2 large (112 g) egg yolks (see note #2)
  • 4 tablespoons (60 g) water
  • 1/2 tablespoon (10 g) acacia honey
  • 14.1 oz. (400 g) butter, softened
  • 1/2 vanilla bean
For the decoration:
  • 7 oz. (200 g) toasted flaked almonds
  • 1 tablespoon icing sugar

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  1. Preheat the oven to 355°F (180°C). To make the almond dacquoise, place egg whites and 3/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon (185 g) caster sugar in a saucepan and beat with a hand whisk. Continue whisking and bring the mixture over low heat to warm up.
  2. Remove the egg whites/sugar mixture from the heat and beat with an electric or stand mixer at a slow speed. Gradually increase to medium speed and whisk for about 5-7 minutes, then finish the meringue at high speed to get the glossy meringue.
  3. Place almond flour, 3/4 cup +2 1/2 tablespoons (205 g) caster sugar, and rice flour in a bowl of the food processor and crush the dry mixture until homogeneous. Add this mixture to the meringue to two-three times and mix with a rubber spatula.
  4. Prepare three parchment paper sheets and draw three discs with a diameter of 8.5 inches/22 cm. Flip these paper sheets so that the drawn circles will be facing down.
  5. Transfer the preparation to a pastry bag fitted with Ateco plain pastry tip 809 and pipe three dacquoise disks in a spiral shape within the pencil marks. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes. Remove the ready dacquoise disks from the oven and let them cool.
  6. To make the buttercream, place egg yolks with the scraped vanilla seeds in a stand mixer bowl and whisk. In a saucepan, place water, honey (warm it up in a microwave for a few seconds in advance), and granulated sugar and bring to a boil.
  7. Once the syrup reaches 250°F (121°C), pour the sugar syrup into the egg yolks while whisking. Once the mixture cools down and becomes whitish, add the softened butter cubes, one at a time, and continue whisking till the cream becomes smooth and homogeneous. 
  8. To assemble the cake, cut the dacquoise disks' edges with a knife to get the right circles. Cover the first dacquoise disk with the buttercream, and sprinkle with toasted almonds.
  9. Place the second disk and repeat the operation. Finally, put with the third disk and cover the cake's top and edges with buttercream. Sprinkle the cake all over with flaked almonds. Dust the top of the cake with icing (powdered) sugar. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours.


  1. 300 g egg whites approximately equal to 9 raw fresh egg whites from large-sized chicken eggs.
  2. 112 egg yolks approximately equal to 6.5 raw fresh egg yolks from large-sized chicken eggs.
  3. Don't overmix the dacquoise mixture: it must remain airy before baking.
  4. Spread the meringue mixture with an offset spatula instead of making a spiral with a pastry bag and a tip.
  5. Roast sliced almonds in the oven at 300°F/150°C for 15 minutes.
  6. Serve the cake at room temperature: take it out of the fridge 30 minutes before serving.
  7. Make ahead option: Bake dacquoise disks in the evening and keep them in a cool place. Assemble the cake the next day.


Keywords: almond cake, almond cake recipe, Italian almond cake, Italian almond cake recipe, torta Elvezia, Elvezia cake




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