MODENA RICE TORTE
3-1/2 cups milk
3 strips orange peel
3 strips lemon peel
1 stick cinnamon
1 cup arborio rice
1/2 cup sugar
1-1/2 tablespoon unsalted butter to coat pan
5 large eggs, beaten
3/4 cup blanched almonds, toasted, chopped
Combine the milk, fruit peels, and cinnamon stick in a heavy saucepan. Bring slowly to a simmer. Stir in the rice, cover and cook over low heat until the rice is plump and tender, 20-25 minutes, stirring occasionally to be sure the rice does not stick. The mixture will be a little soupy. Remove the pieces of peel and cinnamon stick. Fold in the sugar and turn the mixture out into a bowl to cool completely.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Toast the almonds on a bake sheet until they turn lightly brown, 8-10 minutes. Coarsely chop them.
Generously butter a 9" springform mold. Stir the eggs and almonds into the rice. Pour the mixture into the mold and bake for 50-60 minutes. A knife inserted 2" from the edge of the pan will come out clean when it is done.
Cool the cake on a rack. Run a knife around the edge of the pan, release the sides, and unmold the torte onto a rack. You can reverse it later onto a platter. Serve wedges in a pool of Caramel Sauce.
Yield: 10-12 servings
Early Preparation Tips:
* This torte can be made a day ahead, sealed tightly in a bag and refrigerated. Rewarm it in a 325 oven for 20 minutes.
1 cup sugar
1/4 cup water
1/2 cup whipping cream
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, coarsely chopped
Heat sugar and water in a heavy saucepan slowly so that the sugar dissolves before it boils. Cook over medium high heat brushing down the ring of sugar crystals around the pan with cold water.
Within 5 minutes the sugar syrup will begin to caramelize. Take the pan off the heat when it is a light tan color, and whisk in the whipping cream and butter.
Return the pan to low heat, stirring until the sauce is smooth. Serve warm. Reheat as needed.