When we have a big family get together, I inevitably bring along desserts and as some of our family are coeliac and lactose intolerant I will often try to make something that everyone can eat dessert. These Mini Flourless Ginger Orange Cakes were made for a Remembrance Day family picnic that we go to every year in honour of hubbys Pop and the men in his unit. Pop loved ginger so it felt right to create something with a ginger kick as a tribute to him. Well these were a definite winner. Everyone, allergies or not, loved these. My father in law went back for thirds I’m fairly sure.
WHY I LOVE THESE MINI FLOUR GINGER ORANGE CAKES
These are so full of flavour – vibrant, fresh and zingy. These little cakes are moist but not dense. They also have the bonus of being able to be easily gluten free and, without the frosting, dairy free too.
Very easy. You will need to prepare the orange and whip up some egg whites but that’s about as difficult as this gets. The butter is added in melted, so no creaming butter and sugar together which saves on time.
You can make these cakes the day before. The syrup can also be made and spooned on the day before but the frosting is best made fresh.
Store the cakes in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days. Bring them to room temperature before serving.
TOOLS USED IN THIS RECIPE
Big orange flavour and a kick of ginger
I’m quite partial to a moist flourless cake. Often made using ground nuts, I really enjoy not only the nuttiness but also the fact that they remain so moist. These Flourless Orange Cakes, like the Flourless Lemon Cake and Flourless Chocolate Hazelnut Cake that came before them, are exactly that.
They are filled with flavour from almonds and orange but also have a slight kick of ginger. If you’re a ginger super fan then I suggest you can add another couple of teaspoons of fresh ginger to get a stronger flavour. I use both ground ginger and fresh ginger in this recipe. The fresh ginger has a nice bite that the ground ginger doesn’t have but ground ginger is a much more concentrated flavour.
While this recipe is very similar to my Flourless Lemon Cake, the major difference aside from the flavours, is the fact that this recipe uses a whole orange, skin and all in the batter. To remove any bitterness from the orange and to soften it, the orange is first placed in water that is then brought up to a boil. That water is discarded and you repeat the process a second time. Now you puree it as fine as you can get it and I recommend using a strainer to remove any large chunks of orange peel that may not have pureed properly.
How to make flourless orange cakes
This puree is then added with other ingredients into the batter.
The final step is to whip the egg whites, just using a regular hand beater, until they have soft peaks and then gradually fold them into your batter. These will add air and lightness to the cakes. The best way to incorporate whipped egg whites into a batter like this is first to mix through about 1/3 of the whipped egg whites normally. This will lighten the batter a little and make it easier to mix. Then you add the remaining whipped egg whites but fold these in gently until they are just incorporated. Mixing it in slowly means you won’t be beating out all that lovely air you took the time to whip in. I use a medium ice cream scoop to divide the batter among the holes of an 8 hole mini loaf cake tin.
There are two toppings on these Flourless Orange Ginger Cakes but you can opt for just one or both, or none at all. The cakes really are delicious just on their own but to take them to the next level, there is an orange ginger syrup (similar to what you might use in your cocktails) spooned over the top. Once that has had a little time to settle, I add a quick and easy cream cheese frosting to the top.
My favourite way to eat these is definitely with both toppings but they will be just gorgeous served without them as well.
More delicious treats you’ll love
- Blood Orange Loaf Cake
- Dreamy Creamy Orange Cupcakes
- Flourless Lemon Cake
- Flourless Chocolate Hazelnut Cake
- Orange Semolina Cake with Yoghurt and Pistachios
- Baklava Frangipane Tart with Orange Honey Syrup
For the cakes
- 1 small orange (about 200g / 7oz)
- 1 cup / 200g / 7oz caster (superfine) sugar
- 113 g / ½ cup / 1 stick unsalted butter, melted (notes)
- 4 large eggs, separated
- 250 g / 2 ½ / 8.8oz cups almond meal
- 1 teaspoon baking powder (GF if required)
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 2 tablespoons freshly grated ginger
- 2 teaspoons ground ginger
For the syrup (optional)
- 1/4 cup orange juice
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1 teaspoon finely grated fresh ginger
For the cream cheese frosting (optional)
- ¼ cup / 57g / 2oz cream cheese
- 57 g / ¼ cup / ½ stick unsalted butter, softened
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- Pinch of salt
- 1+1/4 cup icing (powdered / confectioners) sugar
- 1 teaspoon milk (if required)
For best results, always weigh ingredients where a weight is provided
For the cakes
- Preheat oven to 180C / 350F / 160C fan forced. Grease and flour an 8 portion, mini loaf tin.
- Place the orange in a medium saucepan and cover with water. Place over high heat and bring to a boil. Discard the water and repeat this process. Let the orange cool for 10 minutes before pureeing in a blender, then push the puree through a strainer to make sure all chunks are removed.
- In a clean bowl with a hand beater, whisk the egg whites to soft peak stage.
- In a separate bowl mix together the orange puree, sugar, melted butter, egg yolks, almond meal, baking powder, salt and both gingers. Combine well.
- Add 1/3 of the beaten egg whites and gently mix through to thin the batter. Now add the remaining egg whites and carefully fold through so as not to knock out the air.
- Divide the mixture evenly among the 8 loaf tin holes (they should be about ¾ full). Bake for 33-35 minutes until a toothpick comes out clean and it springs back when you touch the top.
- Allow to cool in the tin before carefully removing. You may need to run a knife around the edges to loosen them.
For the orange ginger syrup
- Add all ingredients to a small saucepan and stir over low heat until the sugar dissolves. Turn the heat up to medium and let it simmer, just swirling the pan from time to time for about 4-5 minutes until it thickens.
- Place the cakes on a wire rack over another baking tray, then spoon the syrup over the top of the cakes allowing the excess to drip away.
For the cream cheese frosting
- Beat together the butter and cream cheese until well mixed. Add the vanilla and salt and beat through. Add the sugar ¼ cup at a time, slowly beating it in so that it doesn’t turn into a dust cloud. Once all the sugar has been added, beat well for 1 minute. If the frosting needs thinning, add just a little milk at a time until it’s the consistency you want.
- For best results you should always weigh ingredients like flour and sugar. Kitchen scales are relatively cheap but if you can’t weigh the ingredients, use the spoon and level method (don’t scoop).
- When greasing the baking tin, make sure to use gluten free flour and dairy free spread if they need to be GF or DF. To make these cakes dairy free, you can substitute butter for a dairy free spread. Either leave off the cream cheese frosting or use a dairy free options for the frosting also.
- Also if you are making these gluten free, check your baking powder - some are not GF.
- The calorie count on this recipe includes both the syrup and cream cheese frosting.
Tools used in this recipe
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