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Battenburg Cake

1 cup butter, softened
1 cup sugar
3 eggs
1/4 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/8 teaspoon salt
red food coloring
1 cup apricot jam
2 cups finely ground almonds
3 cups confectioners' sugar
1 egg, room temperature
1 1/2 teaspoons lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
lemon juice or water
confectioners' sugar

Cream butter and 1 cup sugar together. Beat in 3 eggs, one at a
time. Mix in vanilla. Stir in flour, baking powder and salt gently.
Add milk if needed. Divide batter into 2 equal parts. Add food
coloring to 1 part to make a deep pink color. Grease two 7" square
pans. Spread batters into pans. Bake at 350 degrees until an inserted
wooden pick comes out clean, about 25-30 min. Let stand in pans 5
min. Turn out on racks to cool. Trim edges from both cakes. Cut
each cake lengthwise into 4 strips as wide as the cake is thick.
Trim to make strips match. Heat jam slightly. Spread on sides to
glue 2 pink and 2 white strips together checkerboard fashion. Spread
all 4 sides of completed cake with jam. Repeat with remaining pink
and white stripes. Makes 2 cakes. To make almond paste: Mix almonds,
confectioners' sugar, egg, lemon juice and almond extract together.
Knead until smooth, adding a bit of lemon juice or water if too
dry to roll. Add only 1/2 teaspoon at a time. It will be stiff.
Divide into 2 equal parts. Roll 1/2 of paste 1/8" thick on a
surface lightly dusted with confectioners' sugar. Cut to fit length
of cake and long enough to cover 4 sides leaving ends uncovered.
Lay cake on one end of paste. Wrap completely to enclose all 4
sides of cake pinching paste to seal. Roll in granulated sugar.
Place with seal underneath on serving plate, or store in plastic
bag. repeat for second cake. Chill. Slice thinly to serve.


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