Sunday, 20 January 2013

lemon and orange cake

day six: 14stone (196lbs) - I feel slimmer just being this virtuous...

... so this cake is a bit of an experiment and whilst i'm not claiming that it's diet-proof it is most certainly on it's way to being virtuous whilst still being bloody delicious... it contains no flour and is therefore lower in carbs than a regular cake - i'm using ground almonds instead... it contains no fat at all - it uses the eggs to bind, the eggs which 'up' the protein quite considerably... and it contains a nominally reduced amount of sugar as i'm using a sugar substitute called Truvia... I can't remove all the sugar as sugar does actually add structure to the cake and whilst I may be desperate, i'm not stupid... the original recipe is Nigella's classic Clementine Cake and is an absolute breeze to make... i've included a lemon in mine because that's what I had in the fruit bowl... any citrus fruit will work and it's because of this that i'm entering it into January's brilliant tea time treats bloggers challenge hosted by Karen at Lavender and Lovage and Kate at What Kate Baked...

... i'm loving this snow... for those of you not in the UK, pretty much the whole of the country is swathed in a thick blanket of whiteness... as usual, the few inches we had overnight this week have completely paralysed us, were we in Canada or Norway we'd suck it up and get on with stuff... but being the proper British types we are, we've managed to grind to a complete standstill... I absolutely love this feeling... snow is mostly such a happy event, it reminds me of christmas and fun, silly times and living in the middle of nowhere also means virgin sledging slopes at any time of the day... and we're due for another huge downpour of snow this evening, so the fire is lit... chicken thighs are in the oven and I have cake... there's very little more I need in life really... it also creates the most spectacular light for taking photographs.  It's as though the whole of the garden has become a giant light-box... genius!

lemon and orange cake
this cake is rather odd because essentially it's a sweet almond flan, which doesn't sound all that appetising... and it is very eggy even though i've reduced the eggs from the original recipe... but it's the wonderful sharpness of the fruit that truly makes this cake... of course the lack of flour and fat make this perfect for celiacs so my niece Emma should love this cake, even if it's not smothered in chocolate...

... a note about the dark crust - i've baked this cake at least 5 times now, both with normal sugar and with reduced sugar and the crust always darkens... it doesn't taste burnt, it must just be the egg content and I suppose I could double line the cake tin to reduce this but i've also noticed that if you look closely at the photographs of this cake on the website and in her book, she has cut the crust off... which as far as I can tell means she has the same issue... it's up to you but I like it how it is...

2 large oranges
1 lemon
5 eggs
100g sugar
1/4 cup Truvia (or a further 125g sugar)
250g ground almonds
1 tsp baking powder

place the fruit into a large pan full of water, cover and bring to the boil.  Boil gently for 2 hours but keep your eye on the pan and top up when needed

drain the pan and then once the fruit is cooled whizz up the fruit, skin and all, with a hand-blender until you have a beautiful pulp

in a large bowl, whisk the eggs, then add the rest of the ingredients, whisking as you go... pour in the pulped fruit and whisk again

pour the batter into a greased and line 20inch spring-form cake tin and bake on 170C for 40mins, then cover the top with a little foil or baking parchment and bake for a further 20mins or until a skewer inserted comes out clean

... one last note about this cake is that, as promised by Nigella, it tastes better after 24 hours and then again 24 hours after that... if you can keep it for that long...

eat and of course, enjoy!



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