With their moist, moussey interior, flourless chocolate cakes make great deserts. I’ve given this one a twist by flavouring it with oranges that have been boiled whole then blitzed up – peel and all. This is actually a technique favoured in Middle Eastern and Italian baking – boiling the fruit takes out the bitterness from the skin and the pith and gives a lovely citrus tang in every bite.
It is actually the easiest cake ever. Just throw everything into a food processor – or blitz up with a handheld blender – pour into a tin and cook for 30 minutes. You can even boil the oranges a day before to get ahead – although I prefer this cake a day old. I boosted the sweetness with coconut palm sugar that you should be able to pick up from a health food shop or just order off Amazon. Use conventional sugar instead if you can’t lay your hands on any. This bake doesn’t need any fat or oil but you will need something to grease the cake tin (I use coconut oil). If your tins aren’t as ‘non-stick’ as they used to be, line them with a piece of greaseproof paper and grease that to help pull your cake out of the tin without resistance.
Ingredients – around 16 small pieces
2 large (seedless) oranges – around 250g each
16 medjool dates – stoned
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
80g coconut sugar
1 tsp baking powder
130g ground almonds
30g cacao powder
Oil for greasing
Preheat oven 150 fan/170 conventional
You will need a well-greased tin of 20cm x 20 cm in size
- Place the oranges in a saucepan of water and bring to the boil. Simmer for about an hour and a half until the fruits are visibly squishy; the skin should not be broken though. Just before – say about 5 minutes – you end the cooking time, throw in the stoned medjool dates to give them chance to soften. This is useful to do if you are making the cake with a handheld (stick) blender rather than a food processor.
- Drain the water from the oranges and dates and blitz them up in the food processor/handheld blender with the bicarbonate of soda for a good few minutes until smooth. The orange skin should be completely broken down and mixed with the pulp and dates.
- Pour in the sugar and whizz, then add the eggs and blend for another few minutes until the mixture looks a little lighter in colour, before tipping in the remaining ingredients.
- Make sure everything is completely blended before pouring the batter into a well-greased tin. Cook for 30 minutes; I test the cake’s readiness by inserting a knife into the centre. If it comes out more or less clean, I take it as done, but note that this cake will be slightly squishy in the middle. Leave to cool in the tin.
I have entered this recipe in Casa Costello’s Bake of the Week
I have also linked this recipe up to Jibber Jabber’s “For the Love of Cake.”