Two of my new study friends and I decided we needed a catch up now we were all well into our study break. It’s been a good 2 weeks since our exam and after seeing each other weekly it was a little lonely without them so the catch up was much anticipated! We didn’t realise until the night, but the date coincided with our result release day so it turned into a celebration catchup
The venue of choice was one a home cooked meal rather then out on the town and I was placed in charge of dessert. Not too bad I think, until I remember that one of the crew follows a gluten and dairy free diet! What on earth do you make for dessert without cutting up pieces of fruit?
I consulted my gluten intolerant sister in law and my celiac friend’s partner for “expert” advise but wasn’t hitting much luck. The night before the dinner I started to trawl the internet for recipes and stumbled across a few that didn’t require ridiculous things like soy flour to make, I decided on a Persian Orange & Almond Syrup Cake.
It was quite an interesting recipe as you end up boiling the orange three times then whizzing up the whole orange, skin and all to create the “wet” part of your cake. A bit lengthy in the process but definitely worth it! The mixing the cake was actually quite simple and when I pulled it out of the oven it looked and smelt about right so I was quite pleased. The only thing I deviated from in the recipe was putting the zest into the syrup, mostly because i hate zest chunks and don’t care if others do 🙂
I carried my lovely cake along to dinner and when the time came, drizzled in the lovely syrup and sliced up. I always get concerned about gluten free cakes being dry but this one was very wet and didn’t need much of the additional syrup at all. The taste was a strong orange with the cardamon cutting through. If I made this again I would probably cut down a little on the Cardamon though as I found it to be a little too much. I would also be interested to try it whenever oranges are supposed to be at their sweetest.
I must say though, for a gluten and dairy free dessert, it was actually quite good! And my friends made all the right noises!
Cheers to good Uni results!
*Recipe courtesy of taste.com.au
Gluten Free Persian Orange & Almond Cake
1 1/2 Cups Caster Sugar
3 Cups Almond Meal
1 tsp Baking Powder
1 tsp Ground Cinnamon
1/2 tsp Ground Cardamon
Mascarpone, to serve ** I chose Double Cream for us diary eaters instead
Orange Blossom Syrup
1/2 Cup Caster Sugar
1/4 Cup Water
1 tsp Orange Blossom Water
Preheat oven to 160C. Grease a 20cm round springform pan and line the base with baking paper
Place oranges in a large saucepan, cover with cold water. Bring to the boil and cook for 15 minutes. Drain. Return to the pan and cover with fresh cold water. Bring to the boil and cook for a further 15 minutes. Drain and repeat once more or until very tender. Drain. Coarsely chop and discard any pips
Place orange in food processor and process until smooth. Use an electric mixer to whisk eggs and sugar until thick and pale. Add orange, almond meal, baking powder, cinnamon and cardamom; gently fold until just combined. Spoon into prepared pan; smooth the surface. Bake for 1 hour or until a skewer inserted into centre comes out clean. Set aside in pan to cool completely
To make syrup, use a zester to remove rind from orange. Juice orange. Place the juice, sugar and water in a saucepan over low heat. Cook, stirring, for 5 minutes or until sugar dissolves and syrup thickens slightly. Remove from heat. Add orange blossom water and zest. Set aside to cool.
Drizzle the cake with syrup. Cut into wedges and serve with mascarpone.