Sunday, May 19, 2013

A Flourless Chocolate Orange Dream

It had been a while since I baked so for Tabitha's birthday, I decided to repeat a trusted recipe. Originally from that goddess of the kitchen, Nigella Lawson, this recipe was posted at http://www.food.com/recipe/nigella-lawson-flourless-chocolate-orange-cake-303266

Chocolate by itself is decadent. Combining it with another flavour is not unusual. It marries well with coffee, caramel, cheese and strawberries. Not being a chocolate fanatic, this recipe glorifies oranges and how beautifully it goes with chocolate. The rich full flavour of chocolate is almost toned down (much to my delight) with the zing of fresh oranges.

Because the recipe calls for the oranges to be boiled for 2 hours, a way to whip up this cake quickly during a busy weekend is pre-cook the oranges during a work night. After the oranges have cooled, they can be kept in the fridge for a few days I reckon. When ready to bake, just pulp the oranges and follow the remaining steps of the recipe. What is amazing about this recipe is the absence of butter or oil. The natural oils from the orange and the texture of the cooked orange pulp are a wonderful binder and almond and orange always works well. I also added only 200g of sugar instead of 250g. You can go even lower if you want, depending on the sweetness of the oranges or your liking to the bittersweetness of chocolate.

While this cake is perfect without any frosting, I have previously topped it with a fresh orange buttercream frosting. I also discovered a good mix for a frosting that is not exactly fluffy but quite thick, and utterly chocolatey: Mix together melted chocolate chips ( microwave for a minute), some of the cooked orange pulp, some icing sugar, and plain yogurt (yes, the sour one!) - it works great to give the icing a smooth gloss. Again - no butter or oil! I don't really have the measurements but keep adding yogurt to get the consistency you want and taste along the way to maintain a balance of bitter, sweet and sour.

I had leftover oranges for juicing for break fast so I peeled the rind as long as possible and used a skewer to twirl them into curls. And they amazingly stay curled!! Ah, the wonders of nature! How awesome is our Creator. The rest of the rind was chopped finely to cover the sides of the cake.
For Tabitha's party with a Dark Chocolate Orange Frosting

The birthday party was good fun - an opportunity to meet new friends and catch up with old ones. A little local eating house in Darlinghurst called The Commons. Highly recommended for casual dining. The waiter's French accent was darling but his waiting service even better.

The cake, I trust, was a hit. Tabitha has leftovers for her family which is always good.

I hope you try this cake - its a must for chocolate lovers and is relatively healthy if one reduces sugar to a minimum.
The same cake with a Fresh Orange Buttercream frosting for my god-daughter!

"Simple joys of meals, grateful am I indeed Never worry how next it comes But always hope for a delicious feed"

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