Kumara cake with candied orange slices
“This pumpkin loaf is delicious warmed or toasted before serving.”
SERVES 12 PREP AND COOK TIME 3 HOURS (+ COOLING TIME)
800g kumara, peeled, cut into 2cm pieces 1 cup (150g) chopped dried apricots ½ cup (125ml) unsweetened orange juice 350g firm ricotta ¼ cup (60ml) maple syrup ⅔ cup (160ml) light agave syrup 1 cup (250ml) buttermilk 2 egg yolks 2 teaspoons vanilla bean paste 2½ cups (300g) almond meal 2½ teaspoons baking powder 4 egg whites 1 tablespoon honey, optional
CANDIED ORANGE SLICES
2 medium (480g) oranges ¼ cup (90g) honey 1 Preheat oven to 200°C (180°C fan-forced). Place kumara on an oven tray lined with baking paper. Bake for 30 minutes or until tender; cool. 2 Meanwhile, stir dried apricots and juice in a small saucepan over medium heat for 5 minutes or until apricots have rehydrated and juice has evaporated. Cool. 3 Process ricotta and maple syrup until smooth; transfer to a medium bowl. Cover; refrigerate until required. 4 Reduce oven to 180°C (160°C fan-forced). Grease a deep 23cm round cake pan; line with three layers of baking paper. 5 Rinse food processor. Process the kumara with agave syrup until smooth; transfer to a large bowl. Add the apricot mixture; stir in buttermilk, egg yolks and vanilla paste, then almond meal and baking powder. 6 Beat egg whites in a small bowl with an electric mixer until soft peaks form. Gently fold egg whites into cake mixture, in three batches. Spoon mixture into pan; level surface. 7 Bake cake for 1 hour and 30 minutes, or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. Cool in pan. 8 CANDIED ORANGE SLICES Reduce the oven to 160°C (140° fan-forced). Line a large oven tray with baking paper. Cut the oranges into 3mm-thick slices. Place the slices in a single layer on tray; brush with the honey. Bake for 45 minutes or until the orange slices are starting to caramelise. Cool on tray or place some in holes of a mini muffin pan to set in curves. 9 Remove cake from pan. Spread top and some of the side with the ricotta mixture. Top with Candied Orange Slices; drizzle with honey, if desired. Undecorated cake suitable to freeze. Not suitable to microwave.