Walnut Torte

This torte flew right to the top of our family favourites on the first try. It takes an amazing amount of time and patience, but the praise you will receive for it will make it all worth it.

This torte does take some time to prepare and assemble.  It’s best to make the caramel sauce and torte the day before you plan to serve it and then make the custard and assemble the torte the day of serving.

Caramel sauce ingredients:

2 Tbsp butter
1 small carton (237 ml) whipping cream
1 cup brown sugar

Caramel sauce method:

Put all ingredients in a saucepan, bring to a boil over medium heat, and boil for 5 minutes, stirring constantly.  Cool completely, or overnight in refrigerator.

Torte ingredients:

10 egg yolks
10 egg whites
10 Tbsp granulated sugar
10 Tbsp finely ground bread crumbs
12 Tbsp finely grated walnuts
2 Tbsp cake flour
¼ tsp baking powder
1 pkt. vanilla sugar (optional)

Torte method:

Preheat the oven to 350 °F.
Prepare 3 nine-inch round cake pans with butter and flour.
Mix egg yolks, granulated sugar and vanilla sugar on medium speed for 20 minutes (!).
Blend the dry ingredients together and then mix them into the yolk mixture.
With clean and dry beaters, beat the egg whites until stiff.
Fold the stiff egg whites into the egg-yolk mixture.
Divide the batter evenly among the 3 pans and bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until done.
Cool completely on a rack.
(The tortes will rise quite high while baking but they will fall when they are cooling.  Use care when you remove them from the pans and handle them.  They are very tender and can break easily.)

Custard filling ingredients:

1 package (135 gram, 6-serving size) vanilla pudding and pie filling
2 cups milk
½ pound unsalted butter
½ cup icing sugar
1 tsp instant coffee (1 pkt Via® is very good)

Custard filling method:

Cook the pudding according to package directions (except that you will use only 2 cups of milk instead of the 3 cups that the package calls for).

Cool the pudding slightly (but still warm enough for the butter to melt) and then add the butter, icing sugar and instant coffee.  If the butter is added while the pudding is still too hot the butter may separate and not blend in.

To assemble the torte:

Mix up 3 packages of Dream Whip® whipped topping, with 1 (or 2) packets of Whip It® stabilizer added, according to package directions.  (Alternatively use sweetened whipped cream.)

Split each of the 3 tortes into 2 layers.

Between each layer, first spread a thin layer of caramel sauce, and then spread with custard.  Spread it on the top of the top layer, and cover this with custard as well.

Decorate the custard centre of the top layer with finely ground walnuts or walnut pieces or halves.

Spread the sides of the torte with the whipped topping.

Use a piping bag to put rosettes around the top of the torte.

More rosettes may be added to decorate the top or base, as desired.

Chill in refrigerator until ready to serve.  It is a rich cake and so it can easily yield 12 to 16 slices.

— Recipe by Steve L.


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