This recipe took a while to create but I’m pleased with the final result. Many people are searching for special gluten free desserts and this one packs a punch. I like to use the corn flour to create a smoother crumb, but the corn meal works well too for a more substantial bite. It’s sweet, so if you like, you can serve this orange almond cake with some whip cream to tone down the sweetness. If there are any leftovers, wrap well with plastic wrap. It’s good for a couple of days.
Candied Orange Almond Cake
Candied Oranges - GARNISH. Wash and cut the ends of the orange, discard. Cut two thin slices of oranges from each end and place on your cutting board. With the remaining piece of orange, make one cut into the centre and open the orange into one long strip. Starting from one end, run your knife along the bottom and cut the fruit and white pith away from the peel. You should have one long piece of peel. Cut half the peel into very thin strips about 3 inches long. You should end up with around 16 -18 strips of peel. Save the fruit and the remaining peel for the cake batter. Remove pith and seeds.
In a medium fry pan, place the sugar, water, orange juice and cardamom seeds and stir over medium heat till the sugar dissolves. Lower the heat, carefully place the peel and two slices in the syrup and gently simmer for about 30 minutes, till the slices become slightly translucent. Watch carefully and stir occasionally through this time.
When ready, remove the pieces and place on a sheet of parchment paper to cool for at least an hour. Strain the syrup (removing the seeds) into a small bowl. Squeeze in the lemon juice and stir. Set aside to pour on top of the cake once baked.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees
CAKE - Grease the sides of a round 9” spring form cake pan. Line the bottom with parchment paper.
Wash the one remaining orange, cut and discard the ends. Cut the fruit into sections (keeping the peel intact). Remove the pith and seeds. Place the orange pieces and the leftover fruit and peel from the candied orange in a food processor and pulse till it becomes a thick sauce. Measure one cup of the sauce for the batter and set aside.
In a large mixing bowl, cream together the butter and sugar. In another small bowl whisk the eggs. Add the eggs, orange sauce, lemon zest and vanilla to the butter and sugar and mix thoroughly.
In a small bowl mix together the dry ingredients and slowly add in a bit at a time to the wet ingredients till blended.
Pour batter into the cake pan and sprinkle with the sliced almonds and place on the middle rack. To be safe, place a baking sheet on the rack below to catch any drips. Bake for approximately 50-60 minutes till a skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean. Cake should be golden brown on top.
When the cake is ready, remove from the oven and place on a cooling rack for 5-10 minutes. With a fork or skewer, poke a lot of holes in the top. Warm the syrup if thickened and slowly pour the syrup all over. Be patient.
Cool the cake for an hour and then remove carefully from the pan and place on a serving platter. Arrange the candied orange slices on top of the cake in the middle of (like a flower) and decorate with the peel.
NOTE: While the candied peel is simmering, make the cake batter.