Thursday, April 24, 2008

Orange and Almond Cake

A no flour cake - I have had a lot of praise for this cake. It's really worth trying and pretty simple to make. It's great on day one and improves over the next couple of days

Pre heat the oven to 160 degrees

6 eggs, separated
240g caster sugar
230g ground almonds
finely grated zest of 4 oranges
juice of 4 oranges
juice of 1 lemon
For the syrup
1 tablespoon of orange flower water
caster sugar to taste

Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F/gas 4. Line the bottom and sides of a 23cm spring-form tin with greaseproof paper.

Keep one tablespoon of caster sugar for later amd beat the rest of the 240g caster sugar together with the egg yolks until pale and frothy. Then mix in the almonds and zest.

Beat the egg whites with the retained tablespoon of caster sugar until stiff and then fold gently into the egg mixture trying not to knock out the air.

Carefully put the mixture into the lined tin, place on the middle shelf of the oven and bake for about 50 to 60 minutes until the cake is golden on top and firm to the touch.

While the cake is baking, make the orange syrup. Place the orange juice and, if using, the lemon juice into a saucepan together with the orange flower water and sugar to taste. Bring this gently to the boil and simmer for about five minutes. Taste – the syrup should be quite tart. Allow to cool then place in the fridge.

When the cake is ready, remove it from the oven and allow to cool before opening the spring-form tin. Transfer it to a plate and pierce holes in the top (a skewer works well). Soak about up to about half of the syrup into the cake. Serve the remaining syrup in a jug. Often, though, the cake is moist enough without the extra juice.

Boiled fruit cake

This is the easiest cake to make and always comes out right.

Pre heat the oven to 180 degrees

500 gms mixed fruit
1 cup sugar
1 cup water
125 gms butter

Put all the above ingredients in a large pan. Bring to the boil and then let it simmer for 5 minutes

Allow to cool then add

1 cup plain flour
1 cup self raising flour
1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
1 teaspoon mixed spice
2 eggs

Mix all the ingredients well with a spoon then put in a buttered cake or loaf tin.

Cook for 1 hour