I’m 85% certain that if Izy Hossack and I did not live in opposite hemispheres, we would be coffee pals. You know those people, who you just catch up with for a coffee and laugh about stupid jokes for an hour or so, and then maybe you don’t see each other for a few weeks, except when you leave juvenile pun-filled comments on their blog posts? That would be us.
But unfortunately we do live on different halves of Earth, and therefore I will continue to leave juvenile pun-filled comments on her blog posts, and just have to content myself with reading her INCREDIBLE book – Top With Cinnamon by Izy Hossack (Hardie Grant, 2014). A lot of people try to send me things, and I usually turn them down. But when I was offered a copy of this lady’s book I JUMPED at the chance.
And you guys, this book. What can I say? If you are as much of a sucker for beautifully moody food styling, simple yet delicious recipes for every meal of the day, and Izy’s particular brand of energetic and fun writing, then you’re going to love this book.
And if you haven’t heard of Izy, get on over to Top With Cinnamon, right now! One glimpse of those cleverly thought out, totally simplified, always delicious and often healthy recipes, and you’ll understand why you need a copy of Top With Cinnamon the book, like, yesterday.
There are so many recipes that caught my eye immediately, getting filed away in the ‘must make’ corner of my brain. I mean, the Swedish Chocolate Cake, those Maple Pecan Buns, the Squash Feta & Sage Focaccia – where to begin?
Where I began was with this guy, the Chocolate Chip Amaretto Torte. Firstly, because I am a sucker for chocolate chips; chocolate Chip everything I say! And secondly because I love Amaretto liqueur AND amaretti biscuits.
This torte turned out even better than I expected. It’s intensely flavoured from the Amaretto and amaretti. It’s super light, with a fine-textured crumb. It’s choc-full of chocolate chips. In the book, Izy’s torte has a cool lacy-looking pattern of icing sugar on top. I used a few cut-out stars because I’m not as classy as she is – and it still turned out so beautifully!
The best thing about this baby is that it’s just as delicious alongside a cup of tea, as it is with a big scoop of ice cream over it for dessert. Full disclosure? I ate a slice with a scoop of ice cream and a shot of espresso over it. UH-MAY-ZING. Izy? Thank you.
- 4 eggs
- ¼ tsp salt
- 110g (1/2 cup) granulated sugar
- 110g (1/2 cup) unsalted butter
- 75g (1/2 cup) plain (all purpose) flour
- 45g (1/2 cup) ground almonds
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 110G (1/2 cup) crushed Amaretti biscuits
- 2 tbsp Amaretto liqueur
- 75g (1/2 cup) plain (bittersweet) chocolate chips
- 1 tbsp icing (confectioner's) sugar
- Preheat the oven to 180C/350F. Line grease and flour a 20cm (8inch) tart or cake tin.
- Separate the eggs into two large bowls. Whisk the egg whites with the salt until soft peaks form, then continue to whisk while gradually adding half the granulated sugar until you get firm peaks.
- Add the butter and the remaining sugar to the bowl with the egg yolks and cream together until fluffy. Stir in the flour, ground almonds, baking powder, crushed Amaretti biscuits and the amaretto liqueur.
- Stir one-quarter of the whisked egg whites into the almond mixture to loosen it.Add the rest of the egg whites and gently fold in using a rubber spatula.
- Pour the mixture into the prepared tin and sprinkle with chocolate chips. Bake for 25 minutes and let cool completely in the tin before turning out onto a plate. Set a wire rack on top of and then flip the whole thing over so that the torte is the right way up again.
- Dust with icing sugar and serve.