Recipe: Mandarin, Almond & Chocolate Blitz Cake

Whole mandarins are blitzed into this tasty cake from Nadia: A Seasonal Journal — skin, pith and all. 

Photo: Rachael McKenna

All the ingredients for this cake (except the chocolate) are simply blitzed up in a blender including the whole mandarin – skin, pip and all. It’s easy and quick to make and impressive with a blast of mandarin flavour. It’s gluten-free, but you can easily also make it dairy-free by using dairy-free dark chocolate.

Makes: 4 serves
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 1 hour


100g dark chocolate, broken into pieces
3 mandarins or 2 small oranges (make sure you use only New Zealand grown, as imported fruit is fumigated and the whole fruit is used in this recipe, including the skin)
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
4 free-range eggs
250g ground almonds


Heat oven to 180°C. Grease and line a round springform cake tin (about 20cm diameter) with baking paper.

Melt the chocolate either in a double boiler or in a bowl in short bursts in the microwave. Stir until smooth, then set aside on the bench to cool slightly.

Chop up the whole mandarins or oranges (skin, pith and all) and add to a blender along with the sugar, vanilla and eggs. Blitz until smooth. Pour into a mixing bowl. Stir through the ground almonds. Leave the batter on the bench for about 10 minutes – this allows the almonds to absorb some moisture.

Pour the batter into the prepared cake tin. Drizzle or spoon over the melted chocolate and drag a chopstick or butter knife through a few times to make a pattern. Bake for 1 hour or until a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean (except for the chocolate parts).

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Allow the cake to cool for at least 10 minutes before releasing the spring latch and removing it. Serve warm or cold (sometimes a day in the fridge – ensure it is well covered – improves its flavour).

Nadia This article first appeared in Nadia: A Seasonal Journal Magazine.
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