Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Chocolate Orange Cake for Steve's Birthday - Gluten Free and Dairy Free

It was my friend Steve's birthday on the weekend, so I decided to make him a cake.  However, there were a couple of important restrictions on my choice of cake - first, it had to be gluten free and dairy free; second, it had to be robust enough to last while standing out on Steve's doorstep for an indefinite period of time.

After a quick Google search, I found this recipe for a Spiced Chocolate Orange Cake on Cook Sister!, which is out of Nigella Lawson's Feast.  I own this cookbook, so it is quite funny that I turned to the Web to find a recipe. 

The key change that I made to fit in with my two criteria was to replace the cream cheese frosting with water icing.  This turned out to be a good move, as Steve did not find the cake until the next day, as he had been away.

This cake is a very handsome burnished brown before icing: 

I made myself a small taster cake, and can tell you that this cake is dense and very chocolatey, with strong orange undertones.  I used one of my precious blood oranges from St Kilda Farmers Market to make this cake, so I like to think this made it especially good.

To decorate my creation, I used red writing gel (which came off when I wrapped the cake in cling film) and strawberries and cream lollies.  I rather liked the bright red against the chocolate - it looked suitably festive.

This is a really easy cake to make - and it is all done in a food processor.  The only palaver about it is boiling oranges for two hours, so it is a very handy cake to have in your repertoire.

Happy birthday Steve!