Life continues as crazy as ever.
Perhaps it’s a test, to build my adaptability and capacity to handle uncertainty.
Currently, I have absolutely no idea where I’m headed next. I’m still stuck in limbo land. I want to follow that part of me that lights up at the thought of a food related career. But I just can’t quite figure out how to make that a reality.
Or I listen to the part of my brain that’s rather inclined to thinking I should do something ‘sensible’, like train as a teacher, or just get whatever office job I can find.
Even baking, my fail-safe pick me up, has lost some of its sparkle. That feeling of guilt I get from spending so much money on expensive non-wheat flours is a little hard to shrug off right now.
I justified this cake on account of it being for the blog and for my boyfriend – the kind of person who likes nothing about Christmas cake except for the marzipan. Being heavy in almond flavoured sweetness, it is a cake for those with a serious sweet tooth, although I don’t suppose many marzipan fans lack one of those! The texture is incredibly moist, sticky and almost fudgey thanks to the layer of marzipan sandwiched in the middle. Clementine zest adds a festive note and a welcome touch of zesty freshness that just cuts through the sweet.
I topped my cake with slices of clementine tossed in a clementine syrup. While this makes for an attractive finish, it does make the cake even moister than moist! So you may want to avoid the fruit and syrup if you don’t want your cake turning out too gooey. Perhaps a snow-like dusting of icing sugar would be a good alternative. Served warm, with a drizzle of cream or scoop of ice-cream and some clementine segments, it would make a gorgeous festive dessert.
Marzipan and clementine cake (wheat-free and FODMAP friendly) -adapted from Honeybuns gluten-free baking
- 250g marzipan
- 175g ground almonds
- 110g caster sugar
- zest 4 clementines
- 1tsp baking powder
- 2 eggs
- 125g butter, melted
Glazed clementine topping (optional)
- 3 clementines, sliced
- juice of three clementines
- 75g sugar
- Preheat the oven to 180°C. Grease a 20cm square cake tin and line the base with baking paper.
- Roll out the marzipan between two sheets of baking paper until it’s about 2mm thick and trim to a square the same size as the tin.
- Mix together the ground almonds, caster sugar, clementine zest and baking powder in a large bowl. Add the eggs and beat in using an electric hand-held whisk. Add the melted butter and beat again, on a fairly high speed, until smooth and creamy.
- Tip half of the cake mix into the tin and spread flat with a palette knife or the back of a metal spoon. Lay the marzipan over the top, then top with the remaining cake mix and spread out.
- Bake in the oven for about 25 minutes until golden and just firm to the touch. It’s tricky to check if the cake is cooked with a skewer as the marzipan will be melty and gooey and will make the cake appear uncooked.
- Allow to cool in the tin before carefully (it’s pretty fragile) turning out.
- If making the clementine topping, place the clementine juice and sugar in a small pan over a medium heat and stir until the sugar has dissolved. Increase the heat and boil the mix, without stirring, for a couple of minutes until it forms a light syrup.
- Remove the syrup from the heat, add the clementine slices and gently stir to coat them in the syrup. Lay the slices over the cake and pour over some extra syrup if liked, although it will make the cake particularly moist!