mandarin and almond cake with cinnamon syrup …

i was looking through gluten free recipes when this recipe called out to me. why? i knew where to get hold of some mandarins. my mum has a mandarin tree and they were ripe for the picking.

thanks ma :)

300g (2 large) mandarins, skin on, quartered, seeds removed
1 3/4 cups caster sugar
2 cinnamon sticks
125g butter, softened
3 eggs
1 1/2 cups almond meal
1/3 cup gluten free corn flour
double cream, to serve

1) preheat oven to 180c /160c fan-forced.
2) grease a 6cm-deep, 20cm (base) round cake pan. line the base and side with baking paper.
3) combine mandarins, 1 cup sugar, cinnamon and 1 3/4 cups cold water in a saucepan over medium heat.

cook, stirring, for 5 minutes or until sugar dissolves. bring to the boil.

boil, covered, for 15 minutes or until mandarin skin is tender. remove mandarins with a slotted spoon.

4) process mandarins until almost smooth. let them cool. reserve the syrup.
5) meanwhile, using an electric mixer, beat the butter and remaining sugar until pale and creamy.

6) add eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition.

7) stir in almond meal, cornflour and mandarin purée.

8) pour mixture into prepared pan. bake for 45 to 50 minutes or until a skewer inserted in the centre of the cake comes out clean.

9) place the reserved syrup in a small saucepan. place over medium heat. cook for 5 to 7 minutes or until slightly thickened.
10) cool the cake in the pan for 5 minutes. transfer to a wire rack over a baking tray. pour half the syrup over cake.

11) serve the cake warm with cream and drizzled with the remaining syrup.

note: many mandarin and almond recipes called for the mandarins to be boiled whole. that is exactly what i did. i removed the seeds afterwards. i added extra water – enough water to cover the mandarins. and i boiled the mandarins for longer than 15 minutes. this cake was baked in 35 mins. i could’ve taken it out earlier so i suggest that you keep an eye on the cake as it’s being baked. you know your oven better than what i do :)

this cake is very moist and light. it’s sticky. it has the right amount of sweetness. you can’t miss the mandarin flavour. the addition of the syrup and cream is a bonus – a wicked one at that.

[ if you want to make a similar cake but with oranges >> flourless orange cake ]

can i just say that gone are the days when gluten free = bland. this is a cake that tastes delicious and looks beautiful. it’s naughty but nice. enjoy ;)

” ‘you never forget a beautiful thing that you have made,’ [chef bugnard] said. ‘even after you eat it, it stays with you – always.’ ” ~ julia child


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