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French Almond Cake with Lavender Lemon Glaze

3/4 cup butter, at room temperature
3/4 cup white granulated sugar
3/4 cup blanched almonds
3 egg yolks
3 egg whites
1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
2 teaspoons lemon zest
1/2 cup cake flour
1 teaspoon baking powder

Lavender Lemon Glaze:

2½ tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
2 teaspoons dried lavender flowers
Boil this together, let steep 5 min. and then cool.
Then stir in 1 cup powdered sugar.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 8×8 inch square pan.

To blanch the almonds, pour boiling water over them to cover. Let them sit for about 5 minutes or until the peels slip off easily. Discard the peels and let the almonds air dry for a few hours. Grind the almonds with ¼ of the sugar.

Cream the butter and ½ cup of sugar until light and fluffy, about 4-5 minutes. Add the egg yolks one at a time, beating until the mixture is pale and fluffy, another 3-4 minutes. Add the vanilla, almond extract, and lemon zest and beat just until combined. Fold in the ground almond mixture. Beat the egg whites in a clean, dry bowl on medium high speed until foamy, then add the cream of tartar. Continue to beat until stiff peaks form.

Sift the cake flour and baking powder into a small bowl. Fold in ⅓ of the egg whites, then ⅓ of the flour mixture. Repeat with the remaining egg whites and flour. Be very careful not to over-stir. Pour the batter into the prepared cake pan. Bake for about 30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the middle of the cake comes out clean. Be careful not to over-bake.

Remove the cake from the oven and let sit for 10 minutes. Carefully invert the cake and the place top side up on a cake platter. Poke some small holes around the top of the cake with a toothpick to allow the glaze to fully absorb.

To make the glaze: Combine the lemon juice and lavender flours in a small saucepan or microwaveable dish, bring to a boil, remove and let steep for 5 minutes. Use a mesh sieve to remove the lavender flours. Pour the glaze over the cake and let the cake sit for at least 20 minutes before serving.

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