Because A Friday Treat is the Perfect Way to End the Week!

Thursday, 1 March 2012

Chocolate Orange Syrup Cakes

This week I’ve taken an idea and run with it, regardless of whether it makes sense or sounds nice or in fact even works when put into practice. I’m talking about Chocolate Orange Syrup Cakes. Not the snappiest title, I know and it is somewhat confusing but let me attempt to explain the (albeit questionable) logic behind it.

Basically this has all stemmed from me being bought new bakeware. To be more specific, a silicone heart shaped muffin pan. I wanted to use it but was getting bored of making muffins and cupcakes so started to search for an alternative. A couple of weeks ago I posted a recipe for lemon drizzle cake, a cake which had always been a favourite in my house, and it got me thinking as to how I could develop this recipe further. Now I have always been a huge fan of oranges – in fact I’m potentially the number one fan in the world. I have at least one a day and genuinely feel weird if I don’t have one, making it a borderline problem but we’ll ignore that for now! I also of course, love chocolate and therefore the combination of chocolate orange just makes perfect sense to me and so this is how the idea developed. It was like a big food word-association; lemons, oranges, chocolate orange – winning idea for a recipe!!

I could have made one large chocolate orange syrup cake but having done the lemon drizzle cake recipe so recently, I decided that something slightly different was in order...and I wanted to make heart shaped cakes.

So yes, these are what I’ll be scoffing this Treat Friday and having made myself get up and go to the gym at 7.30am, that’s completely fine. If only I could stop eating cake, I could save on the cost of a gym membership...and have a lie in. 

Some Final Tips Before You Get Started:
  • As I’ve not used any sort of cake case in this recipe, make sure all of your muffin pans are really well greased. I melted butter and painted it onto the pans using a pastry brush and therefore avoided having to serve my cakes in the muffin tin with each person digging cake out of the hole with a spoon. That’d be so uncivilized.
  • When making the syrup, it only needs heating very gently to help the sugar dissolve into the orange juice faster. If you’re dealing with a burnt pan situation then you’ve gotten carried away.
  • It’s an obvious one but just make sure that all of the dry ingredients are sieved into the mixture. No-one wants to bite into a lump of baking powder or cocoa powder.
Chocolate Orange Syrup Cakes

Ingredients (Makes 16)
200g Unsalted Butter (softened)
200g Caster Sugar
200g Self-Raising Flour
1tsp. Baking Powder
3 Large Eggs
3tbsp. Cocoa Powder
8tbsp. Warm Tap Water
30g Flaked Almonds
Zest of 2 Oranges and Juice of 1 Orange.
100g Orange Flavoured Chocolate (roughly chopped)

For the Syrup:
150g Icing Sugar
75ml Orange Juice (freshly squeezed)
25ml Lemon Juice

2x 12-Hole Muffin Tins

1)      Preheat the oven to 180◦C. In a large bowl, beat together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Into this mixture, sift the self-raising flour and baking powder and gradually add the eggs. Stir until well combined.
2)      In a separate bowl, mix together the cocoa powder and warm water to create a smooth paste. Gently fold this paste into the other ingredients before adding the flaked almonds, chocolate, orange juice and zest and mixing well.
3)      Divide the mixture into the muffin tins and bake in the preheated oven for 20 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the cakes comes out clean.
4)      In the final minutes of baking, combined the ingredients for the syrup in a saucepan and gently heat until all the sugar has dissolved and a thin syrup has been made.
5)      Once the cakes have been removed from the oven, while still warm skewer each cake multiple times before pouring over a tablespoon of syrup onto each cake. Leave in the muffin tins until completely cooled.


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