Nutritional Info

Nutrition Facts

Serving Size 1 (342g)

Calories 570
Calories from Fat 339 (59%)
Amount Per Serving %DIV
Total Fat 37.6g 58%
Saturated Fat 8.3g 42%
Monounsaturated Fat 14.8g
Polyunsaturated Fat 14.5g
Trans Fat 0.0g
Cholesterol 166.6mg 56%
Sodium 1476.6mg 64%
Potassium 314.6mg 7%
Total Carbohydrate 36.6g 12%
Dietary Fiber 5.5g 22%
Sugars 14.7g
Protein 21.2g 42%

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Recipe Description
It's difficult to describe the almendrada of Arizona.  A bit like natillas, those custards lightened with fluffy egg whites that are found in other parts of the Southwest and Mexico.  The almendrada has custard that is used more as a sauce, on top of an uncooked meringue stabilized with gelatin.  We found this traditional dessert quite a few places in Arizona, but in Tucson it was at its most spectacular, with the meringue tinted green, white, and red, the colors of the Mexican flag.  Our version is based on the very first almendrada that my husband, Fredric, and I tasted.
Prep time
3 hr
Cook time
15 min
Ready In
3 hr 15 min

Ingredients

Serves Tool

Serves To:USMetric
1 Cup(c)  sugar
1   peanut oil, for greasing
1 Package(pk)  unflavored gelatin
6   egg whites, at room temperature
1/2 Teaspoon(t)  pure almond extract
1/2 Teaspoon(t)  vanilla extract
1 Cup(c)  almonds, toasted and finely chopped
1/8 Teaspoon(t)  sea salt
2 Cup(c)  scalded milk
1/4 Cup(c)  almonds, slivered

Preparation

About 1 hour in advance. lightly oil a 9 by 5 by 3 inch glass loaf pan, or 6 cup mold and chill.  Also chill a large mixing bowl and beaters.  In a small bowl, sprinkle gelatin over 1/4 cup of cold water and let sit for about 5 minutes, until all the water is absorbed.  Add 1/2 cup of boiling water, stir until dissolved, and set aside to cool.  In the chilled bowl, beat the egg whites until they just form stiff peaks.  Gradually beat in the sugar, alternating with the gelatin.  Add the almond and vanilla extracts, and beat until frothy.  Fold in the chopped almonds.  Spoon or carefully pour into the cold pan and chill several hours or until firm.  If not using right away, cover with plastic wrap when chilled.  To prepare the custard sauce:  Heat water in the lower half of a double boiler until barely at a simmer.  Put the lightly beaten egg yolks in the top section of the boiler with the sugar and salt.  Gradually add the milk, stirring slowly with a wooden spoon, until the mixture begins to coat the spoon, about 15 minutes.  When thickened, remove from the heat, pour into a bowl, and cool.  Stir in the vanilla and almond extracts or liqueur.  Cover and chill.  The meringue and sauce can be made in advance and assembled when it is time to serve.  To serve, unmold the almond meringue onto a serving plate and drizzle the custard sauce over the top.  Sprinkle with slivered almonds and arrange berries and mint around the outside, if desired.  The almendrada can also be served individually, sliced into 1/2 inch wide portions, and then drizzled with the sauce and garnished.

Additional notes

Variations:  When making the meringue, after adding the almonds and flavorings to the beaten egg whites, place 1/3 of the mixture into a bowl and blend in several drops of red food coloring.  In another bowl, tint 1/3 of the mixture with green food coloring, and leave the remaining 1/3 white.  Spoon the red mixture into the loaf pan first, then spread the plain white, then finish with the green.  Chill for 2 hours, or until firm, and continue with making the custard sauce.  This variation is especially appropriate for a Mexican patriotic holiday such as Cinco de Mayo.

In Mexican Desserts by Socorro Munoz Kimble and Irma Serrano Noriega there is a recipe for Almendrada de Chocolate.  Fold 3 tablespoons of cocoa or instant coffee into half of the basic meringue, then carefully spoon first a chocolate or coffee layer and then a white layer into a 6 cup mold.   Repeat with 2 more alternating layers.  Sprinkle the chopped almonds on top of each layer instead of mixing throughout.  For this version we like to use a coffee liqueur as a flavoring and add 2 tablespoons to both meringue and the custard, although rum can also be used.

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