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Tag Archives: sugar

Blood Orange Cake with Lemon Drizzle and Candied Orange

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This recipe is based on the now famous orange almond cake of Claudia Roden, from A Book of Middle Eastern Food (1968).

I have cooked this cake many, many times over the years and made several variations. This version uses blood oranges as I had some left over from jam making.

Ingredients

Cake
2 blood oranges
4 large free range eggs
1 cup sugar
200 gms ground almonds
1-2 tsps baking powder

Candied Orange
1 orange
6 tbs sugar

Lemon Drizzle
Juice of 1/2 lemon
Enough icing sugar to make a lemon drizzle

Method
Cook the oranges whole by boiling in a saucepan, with a lid, with enough water to cover, until the oranges are soft (somewhere between 1-1/2 hours).

Remove from the pan and leave to cool. Process in a food processor until smooth. Add the eggs and sugar, process again. Add ground almonds and baking powder and pulse to mix. The mixture will be quite loose, if too liquid, you can add more ground almonds.

Grease a 22cm springform tin if you want a flatter cake, or a grease a 20cm tin for a slightly higher cake.

Transfer the mixture to the tin and bake in a slow oven (150 degrees C fan-forced, 170 degrees C non fan-forced) for about an hour or until a skewer inserted in the cake comes out clean. You can cover the top of the cake with foil if it is browning too quickly.

Remove from the oven to cool to room temperature.

Candied Orange
Make the candied orange in the following way:
Cut the orange into fine slices, removing the flesh and juice , leaving only the skin.
Place into a saucepan of water, and bring to the boil.
Remove from the heat and drain the rind. Do this twice more.
Finally make sugar syrup with the sugar and 1/2 cup of water. When the sugar is dissolved, place the orange rind into the syrup and cook for 10 minutes or until the syrup is reduced and thickened.
Remove the rind and place on baking paper on a baking sheet making sure the pieces do not touch.
Dry in very low oven for 1-2 hours until the pieces are no longer “wet”.
Store in an airtight jar in caster sugar if not using straight away.

Lemon Drizzle
Mix the lemon juice with enough icing sugar to create the desired lemon icing that will drizzle down the sides of the cake.

Serve the cake iced with the lemon drizzle and decorated with candied orange pieces.

For this cake, I didn’t have enough candied orange, so added some of my cumquats in sugar syrup from a previous post.

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Blood Orange Marmalade

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This is a lovely, fragrant marmalade. The fruit gives a wonderful rich pink/ red colour to the finished product.

It’s only possible to make when blood oranges are in season, from about September to December in Australia. Blood oranges, like any citrus, lose their pectin when old.

I made the mistake last year of buying several kilos of the fruit right at the end of the season. Having chopped it all up, made my marmalade, I was horrified to find that none of the jars had set! However, I put the non-marmalade to use. Great mixed into a butter cake, giving it a really tangy flavour.

Ingredients

2-3  blood oranges
Water to cover fruit
Sugar

Method

Cut the fruit in half. Chop into segments, peel and pith included. Remove as many pips as you can. You want strips of citrus so that your marmalade is chunky. Put the fruit into your saucepan.

I found some handy tips about preparing the fruit from the following blog post:

http://foodinjars.com/2012/01/small-batch-blood-orange-marmalade/

Cover generously with water, making sure you have enough in the pan so that the fruit does not boil dry. Bring to the boil and simmer until the fruit is tender. This should take from between 45 minutes to 1 hour.

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Measure the pulp and remaining liquid. Return to the pan adding 1.5 cups of sugar for every 1cup of pulp. Return to the boil, making sure the sugar is dissolved. Cook until setting point is reached  – 20 to 30 minutes. Ladle carefully into sterilised jars and leave to cool.

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Strawberry Conserve

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This recipe from my mother was my first attempt at jam making. I’m not sure who developed this version, but the jam is sensational as it is slightly tart, having only half the sugar of other recipes. As strawberries have a high pectin content, it sets well.

It’s really a conserve, as the fruit is kept whole. Conserves are a form of preserving in which whole fruit is suspended in jelly. I find berries make great conserves.

My mother noted: “do not make large quantities  – 2 pounds (1kilo) of strawberries is the maximum to be made at the one time”.

I’ve been making this conserve for ages and it’s always scrumptious.

Ingredients

500gms strawberries
250gms sugar
Juice of 1 lemon

Method

Hull the strawberries and put into a china or plastic basin (not metal).  Cover with the sugar and leave for several hours or overnight.

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Add lemon juice and gently stir the mixture to make sure all the sugar is dissolved.

Transfer to a large saucepan and boil briskly, testing for setting point regularly. When setting point* is reached – about 25 to 30 minutes, remove pan from the stove. Ladle carefully into sterilised jars and leave to cool.

Note: use a wooden spoon and do not stir vigorously so that the berries are kept mostly intact.

*Testing for setting point
While the jam is cooking, place a small saucer in the freezer to thoroughly chill (about 5 minutes). When you think the jam may have reached setting point, remove the saucer form the freezer, place a teaspoonful of jam on it, put back in the freezer for 3 or 4 minutes. If the jam has a jelly-like consistency or a crinkly skin has formed on the sample, the jam is ready.

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