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adapted from recipelion.com
I'm not really big on baking. Cheesecakes are one thing, but if I goes beyond that or apple pie... I either have something up my sleeve or a stick up my butt. I usually bake when I'm stressed or in a bad mood, and then I try to give as much of it away as possible so that I don't also eat my feelings.


This cake, however, may have changed my view a little bit on what a couple hours and a few moments of delicacy can really mean; happiness. (And yes, the picture above is the one I actually  made. Doesn't it make you curious??)
This cake is so good that I don't even know where to begin... I guess with the fact that for once I wasn't in the mood for something chocolate; something I whole-heartedly blame on my pregnancy hormones being whacked out today. Also, I am always striving to make a cake that my "cake-hater" husband will actually eat, even if he drowns it with ten cups of coffee. Not to mention, I wanted to go a little out of the way because my in-laws are here waiting for me to pop and I think I will always feel a little insecurity about my cooking when they are here because the very first time I made them dinner it was "too salty" and I'll never forget the embarrassment I harbored for a long time after that. Now, every meal I serve them has to be flawless! My rule. of course.


Granted, right about now, anything that requires extra effort takes away pretty much all the energy I have for the rest of the day. That being said, after I made this I didn't get anything on my actual "to-do" list accomplished. Well worth it in the end, I'd say.
By the time it got finished baking, I tried a slice, hubby and father-in-law each had a slice, I sent one home for mother-in-law, and gave some to the neighbors who I had to get some baking soda from in order to finish the recipe-- it was almost gone!
Then, my mom and dad came by for a 'sliver' each, Noah had a bit for dessert, and that leaves one piece that Jon & Noah will probably end up splitting SOMEHOW because Noah put in his digs for some at his snack time tomorrow.



The recipe isn't complicated, but it is a little bit time consuming, especially if you are making it for the first time. Trust me, though. You will not be sorry!


Almond Rum Cake
Ingredients
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar (I substituted this with 1.5 teaspoons of lemon juice instead)
  • 2/3 cup butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 cups white sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon almond extract
  • 2 teaspoons grated lemon zest
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 2 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 cup finely sliced almonds
  • pinch of cinnamon
  • 1-2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons dark or spiced rum (I used Sailor Jerry)
  • Smucker's Caramel Syrup (optional)

Instructions

Preheat oven to 300F. Grease one 10-inch pan and sprinkle the almonds and brown sugar evenly over the bottom. Separate the eggs. In a bowl, beat the egg whites with the cream of tartar until stiff. Set aside. In a large bowl, cream the butter with the sugar. Beat in the egg yolks, then the vanilla, almond extract, lemon juice, lemon rind and milk. In another bowl, stir together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and cinnamon. Beat into the creamed mixture. Stir in about 1/3 of the egg whites to lighten the batter and then fold in the rest gently but thoroughly. Turn batter into the prepared pan. Bake at 300F for 1-1.5 hours or until cake tests done when a toothpick inserted neat the center comes out clean. As soon as you remove the cake from the oven, sprinkle the top evenly with the rum and drizzle caramel syrup. Transfer to a rack to cool.
 


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