A torte is a cake made primarily with eggs, sugar, and ground nuts instead of flour. Variations may include bread crumbs as well as some flour. Tortes are Central European in origin. The word torte is derived from the German word Torte (pronounced [ˈtɔʁtə], which has a somewhat different meaning), which was derived from the Italian word torta, which was used to describe a round cake or bread.
The most well-known of the typical tortes include the Austrian Sacher torte and Linzertorte, the German Schwarzwälder Kirschtorte and the many-layered Hungarian Dobos torte. But other well-known European confections are also tortes, such as the French Gâteau St. Honoré. Tortes are commonly baked in a Springform pan.
An element common to most tortes is sweet icing. (Exceptions include several French tortes, such as Gâteau Mercédès and Gâteau Alcazar.) When the cake is layered, a thick covering of icing is placed between the layers, and there is almost always icing on the tops and sides of the torte. A number of European tortes do not have layers.
In America, wedding cakes are sometimes called tortes, and their creation has developed into quite a complicated technique of its own.
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