CHOCOLATE CITRUS BAR
Makes 16 pieces, 2 1/2 inches square
Adapted from Chef Iiro Heinila, Hotel Okura, Amsterdam
ALMOND CAKE LAYER
1 ¼ cup whole eggs
¾ cup ground almonds
¾ cup confectioners’ sugar
1 cup egg white
½ cup all-purpose flour
¼ cup unsalted butter, melted
Grated zest of 2 lemons
½ cup sugar
1 ½ cup lemon juice
1 ½ cup whole eggs
1 tsp unflavored gelatin soaked in 1/8 cup cold water
1 ¼ cup best quality white chocolate
3 tsp cocoa butter, melted
1 cup whole milk
¼ cup heavy cream
1 ¼ cup bittersweet chocolate
¼ cup butter
1. For the almond cake, preheat oven to 350 degrees and set racks in the upper and lower thirds. Butter and line with parchment two 10- x 15-inch rimmed sheets.
2. Whip the whole eggs with the ground almonds and confectioners’ sugar until aerated. Whip the egg whites and sugar to a firm peak. Fold into the whole egg mixture and fold in the flour followed by the butter.
3. Spread in the prepared pans and bake until golden, about 10 to 15 minutes. Slide from the pans to racks to cool.
4. For the lemon cream, bring the lemon juice, zest, and sugar to a boil. Whisk the eggs and whisk some of the hot liquid into them. Return the remaining liquid to a boil and whisk in the eggs, continuing to whisk constantly until slightly thickened – be careful not to let the mixture boil or the eggs will scramble. Off heat, whisk in the soaked gelatin, white chocolate, and cocoa butter. Cool to spreading consistency.
5. To assemble, cut a third from each cake layer to make a 10-inch square and a 10- x 5-inch rectangle. Set one of the 10-inch squares on a pan and spread with a third of the lemon cream. Top with the two rectangles and spread with another third of the cream. Place the remaining square of cake on the filling and spread with the remaining cream. Freeze to set.
6. To finish, bring the milk and cream for the glaze to a boil. Pour over the chocolate in 3 additions, mixing after each. Mix in the butter. Cut the cake into 4 bars, each 2 1/2 inches wide and cut across at 2 1/2-inch intervals to make cubes.
7. Arrange on a rack and pour the cooled glaze over them.