Fratelli Perata Winery
Hazelnut Cake
(Torta alle Nocciole)

There are many exciting happenings in the world, never-ending, it seems. Some of which we could totally pass on, but others are just too much fun. Even as things change, the old trees continue to survive. Walnut and hazelnut trees are big and old, but reliably once a year a crop of delicious and nutritious nuts can be harvested. In NW Italy, hazelnuts are an important crop. We are fortunate that Howard and Trudy were gracious enough to pass along this recipe from their friend, Chef Carlo Zarri, Hotel San Carlo, Cortemilia, Italy. It is a perfect example of the region and of hazelnuts. With a slight recipe adjustment from the Perata girls, this cake, with a full glass of Sangiovese will make you think you are in Italy.

4 eggs
1/3 c flour
1/4 c sugar
1/2 t baking powder
150 grams of roasted ground hazelnuts
2/3 cup Nutella
1/2 cup of mascarpone
2 T strawberry jam

Pre-heat Oven to 325 degrees

Separate the yolks from the whites and whip the whites until they are stiff.

Beat the yolks with the sugar until creamy then add the ground hazelnuts, flour and baking powder. Mix, then mix in Nutella.

Fold in the whipped whites and mix well.

Pour into greased cake pan and bake at 325 degrees for 30 minutes.

Blend mascarpone and strawberry jam.

Top each slice of cake with a dollop of the mascarpone and pair with Sangiovese.