Friday, February 8, 2013

Orange Almond Spice Cake #1

Loaded with orange and spices, I think this would make a perfect Easter dessert. The almond flour gives it a marzipan cake taste and texture, which I love. I'm naming this #1 because while it's perfect as is, I'm still experimenting with the recipe and may come up with a variation down the road. You could top this with fresh or frozen/thawed berries, or make a simple glaze, but I'm leaving it plain to try in a bread pudding. Besides, it's good enough to eat just like this! Makes one 8" layer, serves 6-8.

1-1/2 c almond flour, not almond meal (I use jkgourmet brand)
1/4 tsp finely ground kosher salt
1/2 tsp ground mace
1 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
1 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp ground cardamom
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
pinch of ground cloves
1-1/4 tsp aluminum-free baking powder

2 extra large eggs from pasture raised hens, separated
pinch cream of tartar
1/3 c raw honey
1 TB orange zest
about 1/4 c freshly squeezed orange juice
50 ml coconut oil, melted (I know, the measurement is different but it should be on your measuring cup)
1 tsp good quality vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 325*

Using a very light amount of coconut oil, grease an 8" round baking tin, line bottom with parchment paper, and lightly grease the paper.

In a medium bowl, sift all the dry ingredients together. In a measuring cup, pour in the coconut oil and add enough orange juice to make 1/3 c total. In the bowl of a stand mixer, blend all the wet ingredients except the egg whites together, starting slowly and then turn mixer to med-high for another 30 seconds or so. Add in the dry ingredients and do the same, starting slowly and scraping down the sides of the bowl before moving to med-high for 30 seconds.

In a separate bowl, whip the egg whites with the cream of tartar until they form stiff peaks. Fold the egg whites in 1/3 at a time. Batter will the very light and high. Pour into cake tin, put tin on a baking half sheet and bake for 25 minutes, till a toothpick or cake tester comes out clean.

The cake will settle as its cooling. Cool in pan on a rack for 10 minutes, then invert out of tin to another rack to finish cooling. Store the cake uncovered at room temperature.

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