It's hard not to love a cake that requires you to just throw everything into a blender. No beating, whipping or folding, just whizz it all up and bake it. And what's more, it's really rather delicious. Using whole boiled fruit gives it a lovely citrussy fragrance - which we all know is a match made in heaven with dark cocoa.
2-3 oranges (total weight 400g)
1 teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
½ teaspoon sea salt
200g ground almonds
250g soft brown sugar
50g high-quality cocoa powder
Peel from 2 oranges
75g caster sugar
Icing sugar, to decorate
Place the whole oranges in a pan and cover with cold water before bringing to the boil, covering and cooking for 2 hours, adding more water when needed.
Remove from the pan, cut in half and remove any pips, then transfer to a food processor and whizz until you have puree.
Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/gas 4 and grease and line a 20cm loose-bottomed cake tin.
Add the remaining cake ingredients to the food processor and blitz until just combined. Pour into the cake tin and place in the middle of the oven for 45 minutes – 1 hour until firm around the edges but with a slight wobble in the middle. Leave to cool completely.
Meanwhile, scrape the pith from the orange peel, then finely shred. Place the sugar and a splash of water in a small pan over a medium heat and once the sugar has melted, stir in the shredded peel and cook, stirring constantly for 2 minutes until sticky and the peel is coated in the sugar. Transfer to oil-greased baking paper to cool and firm up.
Once the cake is cool, remove from the tin and transfer to a plate. Sift over a little icing sugar, then scatter over the candied peel before cutting into slices and serving with crème fraîche.