Star anise, almond and clementine cake

Star anise, almond and clementine cake

By
From
Bake and Decorate
Serves
8
Photographer
Laura Edwards

The exotic flavour of star anise – a beautiful flower-shaped spice – permeates this lovely, moist cake. You can use lemongrass instead if you prefer for the syrup: split and slightly crush 2 stalks to bring out the flavour. You need to make the syrup a few hours in advance or, even better, the day before to allow the flavours to develop. Try this recipe with oranges if clementines are out of season.

For the syrup

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
80ml clementine juice
50g light muscovado sugar
5-6 star anise flowers

For the cake

Quantity Ingredient
250g unsalted butter, softened, plus more for the tin
225g golden caster sugar
4 clementines, finely zested
4 eggs, lightly beaten
220g ground almonds
80g plain flour, sifted
1 teaspoon baking powder

To decorate

Quantity Ingredient
Eastern fantasy

Method

  1. A few hours before, or the day before you start the cake, make the syrup. Gently boil together the clementine juice, sugar and star anise until it reduces to become a syrup, then cover and leave to infuse at room temperature to develop a good aniseed-orange flavour.
  2. Preheat the oven to 180ºC.
  3. Butter a 20 cm diameter, 7.5 cm deep, round springform tin, then line the base and sides with baking parchment.
  4. Cream the butter, sugar and zest together until very light and fluffy (this will take a good 5 minutes). Add the eggs very slowly then, with a large metal spoon, fold in the almonds, flour and baking powder.
  5. Pour the batter into the cake tin, level the surface and bake for 45–50 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean.
  6. Immediately the cake is cooked, prick holes all over the surface with a fine skewer or cocktail stick and drizzle evenly with the syrup. Leave the star anise flowers from the syrup where they fall on the cake, for decoration. Allow to cool completely in the tin.
Tags:
Baking
Cakes
decorating
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