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Chocolate Orange Cake

July 18, 2010

G brought lilies round this time, I hope he realises that I expect the flowers to continue, I would be quite happy with a bunch a week… With the roses last week came oranges; I always have to find something to do with oranges, I love them, but never eat them just as they are, there’s too much pith, skin and too many pips. Somehow I knew I was going to make Nigella’s clementine cake, I have never made it before and can’t remember where I’ve seen the recipe, but I found that it was in my Green and Black’s cookbook, I’ve certainly never noticed it there before.

The recipe requires oranges to be boiled for hours and as they cooked, the smell slowly started to pervade the house; a beautiful and pungent bitter orange.

I was low on ground almonds, having gone to the supermarket with a shopping list 3 items long, and failed to remember everything on it, so I topped up the quantity with flour, in future I’d use the full quantity of ground almonds. The cake is dense and moist (though I think I overcooked it a little), and the flavour is a subtle chocolate orange. The bitterness of the oranges comes through slightly, the cake, would, of course, be better with clementines, but I like this cake, its grown up.

I cut the cake into little squares to make it easy to take into work on Monday, people have been complaining that Friday cake has fallen by the wayside, so said I’d bring cake in on Monday, I was planning to make this anyway, and there’s only 2 of us in this house to eat everything I bake.

Chocolate Orange Cake

(based on Nigella’s bitter orange cake from Green and Black’s Unwrapped)

1-2 oranges (to weigh 375g skin on)

6 eggs

225g sugar

200g ground almonds

50g plain flour (or a total of 250g ground almonds)

1 heaped tsp baking powder

100g dark chocolate – grated

Boil the whole oranges for about 3 hours – I need 1 1/3 oranges, so I boiled 2 whole oranges and cut one of them up once they were boiled. Cut the oranges in half, remove the pips, and blend to a puree (a hand-held blender works fine, but the recipe suggests using a food processor).

Preheat the oven to 190˚C, grease and line an 8 inch cake tin.

Beat the eggs, then add the sugar, almonds and baking powder, mix together. Stir in the pulped oranges.

Pour the mixture into a cake tin and bake for 50 mins to 1 hour, cover the cake with foil after 40 mins to prevent burning.

Sprinkle grated chocolate over the top of the cake as soon as its out of the oven, leave in the tin until cool.

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