SWEET TREATS

ORANGE AND ALMOND CAKE

By thenourishingcook.com

MAKES 6-8 SERVINGS

This is a really rich cake with a great orange taste. There are a lot of eggs in this recipe but you do separate the yoke from the white of the eggs and whip up the egg whites to make this cake light and fluffy.  It tastes great and you may need to have more than one piece. 

CHOCOLATE CAKE

This chocolate cake with chocolate frosting is so delicious and its nutritious too. 

You can make date paste with medjool dates preferably as they are the softest but you can use other dates. I softened the dates in some warm water for about 1 hour and then put them into a blender with about 1 tbsp of the soaking liquid (you could add more) and blend until you get a smooth paste.

INGREDIENTS:

40g/1/3 cup coconut flour
30g/1/4 cup almond flour
34g/1/4 cup cacao powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp Sea salt
2 tbsp honey or 100g date paste
3 eggs
70g/1/3 cup coconut oil or melted butter
160ml/2/3 cup almond milk
1 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
1/2 tsp Vanilla powder or extract

Preheat your oven to 190C and line an 8″ round cake tin with parchment paper.

Sieve the coconut flour into a bowl and add the almond flour, cacao powder, baking soda and salt. Mix together. Add honey or dates, eggs, coconut oil or melted butter, almond milk or coconut milk, lemon juice and vanilla to the dry ingredients and mix well. I mixed by hand but you could use a mixer. Pour cake batter into your cake tin and bake for 17-22 minutes. Remove from oven when toothpick inserted comes out clean.  Leave to cool while you make the chocolate frosting.

CHOCOLATE FROSTING

INGREDIENTS

105g/1/2 cup coconut butter
75g/1/2 cup cashews (soaked and rinsed)
1 banana
40g/1/4 cup cacao powder
3-4 tablespoons water

Soak cashews for about 30 minutes, drain the water and then rinse cashews. Place all ingredients into a blender. Puree until smooth. The batter is thick, add water if needed but I didn't need to.

Spread half the chocolate frosting on one side of the cake and sandwich together. Spread out the remaining frosting onto the top of the cake.  You could add some grated dark chocolate or crushed nuts or grated coconut on top of the chocolate frosting too.

GLUTEN FREE MINCE PIES

🎄I love to make my own. The pastry crust with the ground almonds is a recipe by Deliciously Ella. If you like a sweet pastry then use this one. If you like a more savoury pastry then I have also put a buckwheat pastry recipe below which I prefer and its very short, melts in your mouth 

🎄The mince pie filling is my own recipe.

🎄CRUST - SWEET
400g of ground almonds
6 tablespoons of coconut oil
4 tablespoons of cold water
20 medjool dates (400g)

🎄CRUST - SAVOURY 
170g/3/4 cup fat (1/2 solid coconut oil and 1/2 butter or all coconut oil)
240g/2 cups buckwheat flour
1 teaspoon salt
3 – 4 tablespoons ice cold water

🎄FILLING
25g dried cherries or cranberries or apricots – cut into pieces
3 large dates – cut into pieces
4 dried figs – cut into pieces
150g raisins
1 Granny Smith apple grated (or apple of your choice)
1 orange – cut off rind into small pieces
Juice of 1 orange
1 tsp nutmeg
1 tsp ginger
2 tsp cinnamon
3 tbsp honey or maple syrup

🎄Mix all together and leave it for 24 hours before using.

🎄For the Savoury Pastry Crust - put the flour and sea salt into a bowl. Get the cold butter and coconut oil and cut into chunks and toss into the bowl with the pastry. Use your hands to rub together to make breadcrumb like consistency. Mix in the cold water until a dough forms.

🎄For the Sweet Pastry Crust - Put all the crust ingredients into a blender and blend into a dough.

Put the pastry dough on some baking parchment paper and flatten a bit with your hands. Get some cling film and place on top of the pastry. Roll out, not too thinly, use a pastry cutter or you could use a jar lid (which is what I did). Cut into pastry case shapes to fit your pie tart tins. Grease your pie tins really well with coconut oil and put a bit of flour in the bottom of each one. If you have some different shape pastry cutters then use those for the tops. Stars are good for the top or just cut out small circles. Be creative!

🎄Pre bake the pastry a bit before you put in the filling. Put into a pre heated oven at 180C for 8 minutes. Leave to cool a bit then add in the mince pie filling and place your top on. Put back in the oven for another 8 minutes until golden brown.