I take a classic Greek walnut cake and change it to a gluten free karidopita. I think I may prefer it to the original.
Yes. Yes and YES!!!
After many attempts and many different flours and combinations I have perfected the recipe for a gluten free karidopita. A "karidopita" is a walnut cake that has been drenched in syrup. It is flavoured with orange, cinnamon an ground cloves.
The original recipe for this cake can be found here if you are interested. Apart from walnuts the traditional recipe calls for breadcrumbs a whopping 250g of butter and quite a bit of sugar. Yes. It's quite decadent. As a lover of all things cinnamon it definitely has my stamp of approval!
I adore this cake. But...I can't help but tinker with the traditional. That's just me.
In this updated version, I've attempted to eliminate a lot of the sugar by substituting honey. I've also done away with the breadcrumbs and used almond meal.
This gluten free karidopita is full of nuts and to my surprise it actually held together beautifully. I'm no stranger to using ground nuts in cakes. I just wasn't sure how the walnuts would work without any other type of traditional flour. The honey along with the vanilla, cinnamon and orange provide the perfect hint of warmth to enjoy during this cooler weather.
My syrup was made with honey and water and then infused into the cake after it came out of the oven. I've topped it with a little coconut sugar and sprinkled some orange zest to complement the other ingredients.
Stunning! Even if I do say so myself! My only criticism is that I may have overcooked it a little too long, hence its very dark colour.
I'm hoping you will enjoy this as much as I do.
- 300g whole walnuts, shelled
- 100g almond meal
- 3 tsp ground cinnamon
- ¼ tsp ground cloves
- 3 tsp baking powder
- pinch salt
- zest of 1 orange
- 4 eggs
- 125ml honey
- juice of half an orange
- 60ml ghee, melted
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 tbsp brandy or cognac
- 60ml honey
- 60ml water
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1-2 tbsp coconut sugar
- zest of half an orange
- Preheat your oven to 170 deg C and line and grease an 18cm baking tin with baking paper. Prepare the honey syrup by mixing the honey, water and vanilla in a small pot over a medium high heat. Allow to come to a boil and cook for 2-3 mins until reduced slightly. Set aside to cool completely.
- Place your walnuts in a food processor and grind them into a "semi-fine"" meal. There should be a mixture of fine and coarse bits. Place this in a large bowl and to that add the almond meal, cinnamon, cloves, baking powder, salt and orange zest. Stir to combine.
- In a separate bowl or large jug mix the eggs, honey, orange juice, ghee, vanilla and cognac or brandy. Mix well and pour into the walnut mixture. Stir to form a batter and pour into baking tin.
- Cook the cake for 45-50 mins or until a skewer inserted into the centre of the cake is clean. Allow the cake to rest for 10 mins in the tin before inverting onto a plate. Pierece the cake withe skewer to make a number of holes on the top and pour over the cooled honey syrup.
- Allow to cool completely before sprinkling with coconut sugar and orange zest.
A serving of double cream would be perfect with this!