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All posts tagged orange

Dense, Dark and Devilishly Delicious: This Chocolate & Orange Cake Has It All

Published January 30, 2015 by The Feminist

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Chocolate and orange: it’s a classic combination that works every single time. But be prepared: this wonderful cake takes this traditional match-made-in-heaven even one step further onto the delicious scale, for this is not just a regular chocolate cake flavoured with orange zest or juice. Oh no. This cake is like a giant cake version of chocolate covered candied orange peel, for it boldly not only contains the zest or juice of this citrus fruit, but the whole – yes , the whole! – orange.

If you think putting whole oranges in a cake sounds a bit bonkers, I totally feel ya. It is not something I, an amateur Belgian baker, do on a regular basis either. But nevertheless, I was so terribly intrigued I simply had to try it! After all, the Spanish have been doing it for centuries! And if there is anything the Spanish know how to do – apart from dancing the flamingo and making paella- it is baking orange cakes. (Preferably using Valencian oranges, of course.)

So there I was, in my tiny Belgian kitchen, boiling two oranges (I used the smaller, but very flavoursome Minneola oranges) in a pot for about an hour until they were completely tender and my kitchen smelled like a Spanish beach party. After that heavenly scented hour, I blitzed the oranges in a blender. Whole. Including juice, flesh and skin. This amazing puree is then mixed through the other ingredients, poured in a tin, baked in the oven  … et voila! You will have never tasted such a wonderful chocolate cake in your life! Thanks to the orange puree, the cake is dense, moist and incredibly pudding-like; anything but what you’d expect from a traditional flour-based chocolate & orange cake. Moreover, the orange notes are punchy, but not too overwhelming, and seem to make the chocolate taste even more chocolatey.

What did I say again? Oh yes, the best chocolate and orange cake EVER.

So my dearest readers, you can stop being skeptical. Bake this cake. You won’t regret it.

Ingredients:

  • 50gr butter
  • 25gr cocoa powder
  • 2 Minneola oranges (or you could use 2 smaller regular oranges or clementines)
  • 2 tbsp rum
  • 1 egg
  • 140gr caster sugar
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 85gr flour

Method:

  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C and line a loaf tin with baking parchment.
  2. Cook the 2 oranges in boiling water for about 1 hour until they are soft and tender. Drain and let them cool slightly before blitzing into a pulp in your blender.
  3. Once you’ve blended the oranges into a puree, put the puree in a large mixing bowl together with the cocoa powder, rum and sugar.
  4. Stir in the egg, mix well, and finally add the flour.
  5. Pour the batter into the baking tin and bake for 30 minutes in the oven.

The Oh-My-It’s-Mother’s-Day Pie: Pistachio, Date and Mascarpone Pie

Published May 11, 2013 by The Feminist

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In celebration of Mother’s Day I wanted to bake something truly extraordinary to honor an even more extraordinary woman: my mother. Throughout the years, all my ups and downs, highs and lows and a lot of exam freak-out moments, my mother has always been there no matter what. She is one of my biggest supporters, cheering me on every time I need to jump another hurdle, and is always happy to impart a few words of wisdom.
To show her how grateful and appreciative I am, I decided it was about time to turn the tables and pamper her with a delicious home-made jewel of a pie. This Oh-My-It’s-Mother’s-Day pie is the perfect representation of my mother’s personality: bright, sweet and beautiful.
The pistachio pie crust is not only incredibly pretty with its very seducing green hue, but has the most enchanting flavour imaginable. The smooth mascarpone filling was flavoured with orange zest and amaretto and decorated with lusciously plumb dates and sharp dried cranberries. It is perfect in every possible way…
If you would like to bake this wonderful pie for your wonderful mother – or for someone else you love – here is the recipe:

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Mascarpone- orange- date pie with pistachio crust
Ingredients:
For the pistachio pie crust:
• 150gr ground pistachios
• 50gr caster sugar
• ¼ tsp baking powder
• 50gr butter
• 1 egg yolk
For the filling:
• 300gr mascarpone
• 1,6 dl double cream
• 4 eggs
• Zest of one orange
• 5 dried dates, quartered
• Handful of dried cranberries
• 1 tbsp corn flour
• 1 tbsp amaretto
• 4 tbsp caster sugar

 
Method:
1. Preheat the oven to 150°C and line a 23cm loose-bottomed cake tin with baking parchment.
2. For the pie crust, put the ground pistachio, baking powder, sugar and butter in a bowl and beat until you get a sandy consistency. Add the egg yolk and mix through.
3. Press this mixture into the base of the prepared cake tin. Use a tablespoon to flatten and press the mixture down to form a dense base.
4. Bake into the oven for 20 minutes, or until golden brown.
5. For the mascarpone filling, mix together the eggs, sugar, corn flour, cream, mascarpone, amaretto and orange zest until you get a smooth and runny mixture. Pour the mixture onto the baked pistachio crust. Scatter the dried dates and cranberries into the batter (some will sink to the bottom, others while stay on the surface)
6. Bake into the oven for 30-35 minutes. Remove the pie from the oven and leave to cool slightly before refrigerating for at least one hour.

Is it magic? No, it’s me being absolutely brilliant! One batter, two totally different cupcakes

Published March 14, 2013 by The Feminist

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What could be better than a cupcake to go with your afternoon cup of coffee? Two cupcakes, maybe? Two totally different but equally delicious cupcakes? Well, consider it done.

I would like you to meet Mr. Pim Cupcake and Mss. Strawberry Daiquiry Cupcake. Two siblings, made out of the same batter, but each with their distinct flavour and independent awesomeness!

Mr Pim is a very intense man. Although he may look very dark (and chocolaty) on the outside, he literally has a heart of gold (and orange marmalade).

Mss. Strawberry Daiquiry is a true diva. She is light, frivolous and likes to brighten up the atmosphere with her sunny personality. Her pink sweetness may sound very appealing, but her perfect cocktail of fruitiness and Bacardi depth can leave you hung over from time to time.

If you would like to have a personal rendezvous with one of them – or what the heck!- even both, just follow the instructions below:

For the basic cupcake batter:

Ingredients(makes 12-14):
• 70gr unsalted butter
• 210gr plain flour
• 250gr caster sugar
• 1tbsp baking powder
• ½ tsp salt
• 210ml whole milk
• 2 eggs

Method:

1. Preheat the oven to 170°C and line a muffin tin with paper cases.
2. Mix the butter, flour, sugar, baking powder and salt together until they form a crumb-like consistency.
3. In a jug, mix together the milk and eggs.
4. Gradually pour the liquid into the butter and flour mixture.
5. Spoon the batter into the paper cases and bake for 20-25 minutes.

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For Mr. Pim:
Ingredients:
• 12-14 basic cupcakes (see recipe above)
• 100gr orange marmalade
• 200gr chocolate and orange spread
• Pim/ jaffa cakes to decorate

Method:

1. Bake the cupcakes according to the above instructions. Once the cupcakes are cool, use a sharp knife to make a hollow in the centre of each cupcake.
2. Spoon about one teaspoon of orange marmalade into the hollow.
3. Spread a generous amount of chocolate and orange spread onto each cupcake and top each one with a Pim (or Jaffa) cake.

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For Mss Strawberry Daiquiri:
Ingredients:
• 12-14 basic cupcakes
• 100ml white rum
• 30gr caster sugar
• 110gr icing sugar
• 45gr unsalted butter
• Red food colouring
• Strawberry jam
• Fresh strawberries to decorate (or raspberries, in this case, since I couldn’t find any strawberries)

Method:

1. Baking the cupcakes according to the above instructions. Once the cupcakes are cool, use a sharp knife to make a hollow in the centre of each cupcake.
2. Add the rum and caster sugar to a small saucepan and bring to the boil, allowing it to reduce by half.
3. Spoon about 2 teaspoons of rum reduction in each hollow.
4. Spoon 1 teaspoon of strawberry jam into each hollow.
5. Beat the butter and icing sugar together with the remaining rum reduction and red food colouring. (Two drops of food colouring will give your frosting a lovely pale hue.)