The house stinks of orange. And I mean stinks. Think orange-cleaner stinky.

Tomorrow we’re having Chinese New Year (CNY) dindin with my family.

I am hoping dindin with the fam will be nice – meaning mom doesn’t just go out and buy cooked meats and leave it at that (cha siu, roast pork, roast duck, and a chicken) cuz that would make me sad. Usually she makes a nice vermicelli dish with dried shrimp, celery and a little bit of pork that we’d eat inside lettuce cups, always a fave. And the “black hair soup” which is a black fungus that’s kind of noodley – usually with some big dried oysters in it for flavour. There was some mention of trying to find a nice fresh pickerel to steam with some green onions and garlic on top. We’ll see, with the last couple of years of Big Bro altogether disappearing, my parents are less than enthusiastic in putting on the whole full-on celebratory dinner for special occasions nowadays.

I did request lobster. But apparently I have had my quota for the next 12 months after the ‘regular’ New Year’s episode where I essentially ate 2 steamed lobsters to myself ^_^;;

I’ve always wanted to try this recipe for a Clementine cake from Nigella, but never really had a good opportunity to get a lot of people around to eat it. People tend to have this obsession with chocolate stuff for desserts or Crave cupcakes (I hate crave cupcakes). I suppose I shouldn’t really be complaining given that I’ve brought carrot cakes to the last 2 gatherings we’ve attended.

Anyhow, my parents don’t much care for chocolate, nor do they care for cakes with lots of frosting (though whipped cream seems highly acceptable) and Dad’s got this recent obsession with having dessert of some sort with coffee when we’re over for family dindin nowadays… o_O; strange. So this sort of fit the bill… and looked easy enough.

So yea, that’s what I’m doing this afternoon for my CNY dindin contribution.

Nigella Lawson’s Clementine Cake

4-5 clementines (about 375g total weight)
6 eggs
225g sugar
250g ground almonds
1 heaped teaspoon baking powder

* Put the clementines in a pan with some cold water, bring to the boil and cook for 2 hours. Drain and, when cool, cut each clementine in half and remove the pips. Dump the clementines – skins, pith, fruit and all – and give a quick blitz.
* Preheat the oven to gas mark 5/190ºC/375ºF. Butter and line a 21cm Springform tin.
* Beat the eggs. Add the sugar, almonds and baking powder. Mix well, adding the pulped oranges. I don’t like using the processor for this, and frankly, you can’t baulk at a little light stirring.
* Pour the cake mixture into the prepared tin and bake for an hour, when a skewer will come out clean; you’ll probably have to cover with foil or greaseproof after about 40 minutes to stop the top burning.
* Remove from the oven and leave to cool, on a rack, but in the tin. When the cake’s cold, you can take it out of the tin.

Couple of side notes: This cake can also be made with an equal weight of oranges+ and with lemons. In which case, increase the sugar to 250g and add a glaze made of icing sugar mixed to a paste with lemon juice and a little water.

[Edit: Oh noes! My oranges burned! I just lost 4 clementines and 2 hours of time. Now I have to start all over again :( This is rather reminiscent of the first time making marshmallows fiasco I had where I burnt the sugar to the pan and had to do it a second time for the same batch. — 350pm]


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