This cake is relatively easy to make and can be presented as a neat layer cake or, as I chose to do in this case, in a more ‘artistic’ way. Kees hates regular meringue, but he loves hazelnut meringue. Traditionally, hazelnut meringue cake is made with a complicated butter cream. The butter cream in this recipe may be slightly less creamy, but it is a lot easier to make and very good all the same. Hazelnut meringe cakes are often coffee-flavored as well, but I decided to use hazelnut liqueur to flavor the butter cream instead.
I based this recipe on this Dutch recipe I found online.
150 grams (1 cup) hazelnuts, peeled
150 grams (4) egg whites
500 grams (2 cups) confectioners’ sugar
125 grams granulated sugar
2 Tbsp corn starch
300 grams (2 sticks + 5 Tbsp) butter, soft
pinch of salt
2 Tbsp hazelnut liqueur (Frangelico)
Lower the oven temperature to 130C/265F once the hazelnuts are done. Chop half the hazelnuts roughly with a knife.
Put the egg whites in a stand mixer fitted with a balloon whisk. Start mixing at high speed. Mix 150 grams of the confectioners’ sugar with the granulated sugar and the salt, and add this to the egg whites in a thin stream.
Add more layers of hazelnut meringue and butter cream to your liking. Finish with butter cream and then sprinkle with the coarsely chopped hazelnuts. Allow to chill in the refrigerator for at least a few hours.