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Saturday, April 30, 2011

RIESLING CITRUS CAKE

Sliced strawberries and fresh blackberries topped this delicious cake.
Honeyed yogurt served on the side...in a wine glass!

I found very few recipes for cakes being soaked with a Riesling Syrup in my online search...and I wanted one - I just knew it sounded good.  I've mixed up a couple of ingredients from the few recipes I found, but the primary recipe is one I found on a Fisher & Paykel blog.  It sounded delectable.  Their photography is so pretty that their recipe looks melt-in-your mouth delicious.  It also appears to be Gluten Free for those who are looking for sweets made GF.  This cake reminds me, in texture, of a British "pudding" so it is fitting that I am watching the DVR'd Royal Wedding as I baked it.

I had a bottle of flipflop Riesling Wine that I just opened and I wanted to use it in a recipe or two...so today I made this wonderful Springtime cake.  A sip for me, a sip for the cake... Cheerio!

RIESLING CITRUS CAKE
Primarily Adapted from Fisher&Paykel "Our Kitchen"

Ingredients:

Syrup:
1/2 cup flipflop Riesling wine
Juice of 2 Oranges **
1 Cinnamon Stick
1/4 tsp freshly ground nutmeg
1/3 cup white sugar
The syrup ingredients
(the oranges were zested before squeezing and obviously the nutmeg was grated!)
Method:
Place all ingredients in a small saucepan and bring to simmer - cooking for 20 minutes - until syrupy.
Straining the syrup over a pourable measuring cup worked perfectly
Strain into small bowl or measuring cup - set aside to cool - refrigerate while cake is baking.
Syrup chilling - always pour cold syrup on hot cake OR
hot syrup on cold cake for best absorption

Cake:
4 large eggs - room temperature
1 cup brown sugar - firmly packed
Zest of 2 oranges** (zest the oranges before juicing for syrup - be sure not to get any of the white pith)
Zest of 1 lemon
1/2 cup Canola or other vegetable oil
1/2 cup flipflop Riesling wine
3/4 cup ground cornmeal flour (I ran cornmeal through the food processor to make it more flour-like)
1 teaspoon baking powder (use aluminum-free if you can find it)
1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
1 1/2 cups ground almond meal

Method:

Preheat oven to 320 degrees Fahrenheit
Spray a 9 inch springform pan with baking spray or grease pan with shortening
(I always place foil around the outside of my springform pans when I bake with them on the off chance they leak.  It would have also been easier had I put a round of greased parchment paper in the bottom of the springform pan)

Beat eggs and sugar together until well-incorporated.
Zest of two oranges and one lemon
Add lemon and orange zest ...mix until well-blended.
Gradually add in oil and wine until fully incorporated.
The wet ingredients fully incorporated
In separate bowl, whisk together cornmeal flour, baking powder, cardamom, and ground almond meal. 
The dry ingredients whisked together
Add wet to dry ingredients.  Don't over-blend.  Very wet batter.
Pour into prepared springform pan and place pan in oven.
A very loose batter - ready to go into oven
Bake for 50 minutes.  Remove pan to cooling rack
Cooling on rack
Allow to cool for 5 minutes before releasing pan and placing cake on serving plate.

(OK - I messed up - I DID carefully run a sharp knife around the edge to release the cake from the edge of the springform pan - it was obviously attached.  Then I turned it upside down and then back up onto the serving plate...and part of the top stuck.  All that sticky looking top in the middle was moist <and delicious I might add since I scraped it off the plate and ate it>.  I don't know if it needed more minutes of cooking...didn't seem to be underdone...I guess I could have left it on the bottom of the springform pan OR used a cake spatula - which I do have - to slide between the bottom of the cake and the springform pan bottom and transfer it without flipping it.  It DID make a difference - this breach of the lightly formed crust.  The center absorbed the syrup much more quickly and, as a result, was bordering on soggy.  Refrigeration helped with that.)

Pour cold syrup over hot cake, slowly, allowing to absorb into cake and then pouring more.  I was doubtful that it would absorb all that syrup (1 cup) but it did!  When I make it next time, though, I'm going to try maybe half as much syrup and see how that impacts the crumb.  I'd like it just a wee bit less moist.
Small amount of top damage will be covered by fruit - so no problem...
and you can see that I poured all syrup on and it was totally absorbed!  However,
see consistency note above.  Try not to damage the light crust that forms on top.

Serve with fresh berries and whipped sweet cream or honeyed yogurt if desired.

Yum!

HONEYED YOGURT

Mix 1 cup Greek Yogurt with 2 tablespoons honey, 1/4 teaspoon vanilla bean paste, and 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon.
Whisk together and serve a dollop on the plate next to the cake.

WHIPPED SWEET CREAM

Mix 1 cup heavy whipping cream with 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract or 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste.  Begin whisking or beating with whip attachment in a stand mixer.  When cream begins to thicken sift 1/4 cup confectioners sugar over cream and continue beating until firm...don't go too far or you'll have butter!

The confectioner's sugar makes for a stiff whipped cream which holds its shape nicely when piped on the plate or just spooned on in a dollop!

This cake is absolutely delicious.  I don't know what I'm going to do (eat it all myself?) since the teen doesn't care for citrus.  Maybe he'll like it because it's topped with his two favorite berries...we'll see!

My slice was topped with honeyed yogurt - it was absolutely awesome!

BON APPETIT, Y'ALL!!!

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