Pain d'Epices à l'Orange

We have some wonderful vintage cake tins from the North of France in our shop for Christmas. They are in the shape of a gingerbread house and this recipe would work well, although it is meant for a loaf tin. This recipe makes a lovely moist cake which improves after a few days and is served sliced.

First make your own gingerbread spice from: 25g ground cinnamon, 5g ground ginger, 7g cardamom pods and 7 g cloves (the latter ground together in a spice mill or coffee grinder). Sift and keep in an airtight container. The mix is more than you need for this recipe.

For the gingerbread you will need: 200g orange marmalade, 90g milk, 1 level tsp. salt, 2-3 whole star anise, 2 tbsp. ground cinnamon, 80g soft butter, 1 good tbsp. of the spice mix, 175g flour, 25g cornflour, 2 eggs, 1 sachet of baking powder (2 tsp.), 275g acacia honey. 1 untreated orange.

Boil the milk with the star anise and let it infuse for 10 mins. and cool. Warm the honey, whizz the orange marmalade in a food processor and reserve a tablepoon of it for decorating the cake later. Cream the butter, add the flour, cornflour, eggs, cinnamon and the spice mix. Add the honey and marmalade and mix well. Reserve a tablespoonful of the cake mix for later. Pour the mix into a loaf tin and bake for 1 hour at 170C. Meanwhile cut the orange into 5mm slices and cook for 3 mins. in boiling water, drain and reserve. After testing with a skewer take out the cake and spread the reserved dough on top and arrange the orange slices on it. Bake for a further 5 mins., then glaze with warm orange marmalade.


16 February 2012

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