This recipe brings some of the best ingredients of Corsica together: Wonderfully nutty chestnut flour, fragrant citrus and the island’s dense, dark-golden honey. Making this cake takes my imagination back on a hike through the island’s lush green forests, and I can almost smell the damp forest floor after a violent summer rain. –
Even if your imagination is not quite as active, or you simply have not travelled to Corsica, yet, this not too sweet spice cake is a great choice for a tea break or as a breakfast cake. And if you like it a bit sweeter, I suggest drizzling a bit of that honey over it…
Ingredients (for a 20 x 9 x 9 cm cake mold):
- 20 grams of butter
- 2 tablespoons of corn flour
- 120 grams of candied citrus peel, cut into small cubes
- 30 ml of chestnut (alternatively citrus) liqueur
- 150 grams of chestnut honey
- 300 grams of strong (wheat) flour
- 150 grams of chestnut flour
- 1/2 teaspoon of fine salt
- 1/4 of a teaspoon of ground nutmeg
- 1/4 of a teaspoon of ground star anise
- 1/4 of a teaspoon of Sichuan pepper
- 10 grams of baking powder
- 100 ml of (light) olive oil
- 3 eggs (room temperature)
- 150 ml of milk (room temperature)
- Grease the cake pan with the butter. Sprinkle bottom and sides with corn flour and shake the pan until the inner surface is completely covered with flour. Place in the refrigerator.
- Place the candied citrus cubes in a bowl and add the liqueur. Mix well, cover and set aside to let soak for at least about 1 hour.
- Warm up and liquify the honey in a waterbath (not too hot) or in the microwave (1/2 minute). Set aside and let cool a bit if required.
- Pass the flour through a fine sieve into a mixing bowl. Add the chestnut flour, the baking powder, the salt and the spices and mix gently with a spoon.
- In a separate (large) mixing bowl, whisk the eggs with the warm honey. Add the olive oil and the milk and whisk until well mixed.
- Bit by bit, add the flour mixed with the spices and mix with a baking spatula or electric hand mixer until smooth.
- Finally, fold in the candied citrus peel and the liqueur.
- Pre-heat the oven to 160 degrees Celsius.
- Pour the dough into the cake pan and bake for approximately 10 minutes. The use a knife to make a ca. 2 cm deep incision lengthwise in the middle of the cake. Continue baking at 160 degrees Celsius for another 20 minutes. Then lower the temperature to 120 degrees Celsius and bake for another 30 minutes or until a tester comes out clean.
- Let cool down completely. Then wrap in aluminium foil and let rest for ca. 24 hours in a cool environment (but not in the fridge) before consuming.
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The more difficult articles to find like chestnut honey and chestnut powder may be found at Supermarket Italy (link on sidebar) or also Yummy Bazaar (link on sidebar). There are probably other places to find those products like Amazon.com and I would bet Walmart also has those items (because Walmart has everything and that is an excellent thing of course), but not being sure, I thought I would mention two places of surety to have.