Spiced cakes are some of my favourite kinds. They ooze warmth, comfort and are delicious. Sometimes I feel the word spiced can be misleading – these are spicy in a way, but they do tend to awaken your senses and palate. I’ve used this concept a few times at Kitchen Therapy – Flourless Christmas Cake and Pumpkin & Carrot Spiced Cake, both of which are a great hit with even fussy eaters.
This cake is a bit inspired by Nigella – using whole oranges with seeds and pits into a cake. But I am not as fearless as she, so after boiling the oranges, I cut them open, remove the pits and seeds, and then crush them.
The cake is not very sweet, so the caramel in the frosting balances out the sugars. If you are forgoing the frosting, I recommend upping the sugar content to ¾ cup.
Note: I have been using a lot of mascarpone recently – no particular reason except that I stocked up on every tub in the city for a particular shoot, and am now trying to use it all up! You can substitute it with cream cheese or leave it out completely in the frosting.