Sticky orange and almond mini cakes with Grand Marnier orange syrup
For the Cake
2 whole oranges
6 medium eggs
250 (9oz) caster sugar
250 (9oz) ground almonds
1tsp baking powder
1-2 drops orange essence
150ml freshly squeezed orange juice
120gr caster sugar
80ml Grand Marnier (or Cointreau)
You will need
35x25cm (14inx10in) baking tray
Round cookie cutter
mini cupcake cases (optional)
Place the oranges (peel on) in a deep pot, cover with boiling water and simmer until soft - about 1 1/2 hours. Make sure you check on them once in a while and top up with more water if necessary. Do not forget them as I did - they can burn and ruin your pot! Cool before using.
Preheat oven to 190 C (375 F). Line the tray with baking paper, brush with melted butter and dust with flour.
Cut the oranges and remove any pips. Place in food processor and blitz until you get a smooth purée. Add the rest of the ingredients a little at a time and keep pulsing till everything is completely combined.
Pour batter into the tray and smooth the surface. Bake for about 40 minutes till firm and coming away from the edges.
While the cake is baking, prepare the orange syrup. Put the sugar and juice in a small pan and bring to the boil. Reduce slighly, remove from stove and add the Grand Marnier.
Pour some of the syrup (you may not need to use it all) over the cake while it is still warm. Do not drench it, it is a very moist cake anyway. Cool cake completely - put in fridge for 30m.
Once the cake is cool, stamp out circles using a round cookie cutter - around 4cm is a good size. Place mini cakes on platter, ideally on flattened out mini cucpake cases as they are sticky. Garnish with a bit or orange zest, flaked almonds, or a dusting of icing sugar.