Alternative Christmas Cake: Orange sponge cake with melting chocolate & caramel middle

I've always had a talent for making a good meal out of nothing. Give me a supposedly empty fridge and I'll whip you up something surprisingly tasty in no time; but I even shocked myself with this one - amazing what a tasty treat craving can inspire you to do in the middle of the night!

Out of the scraps of my kitchen cupboard has arisen this delicious dessert (cupcakes in this case, but for a single, large cake just double the recipe & use a cake tin) which I think would make the perfect alternative Christmas cake with it's festive chocolate orange flavour.

NB: I tend to try and do as much sugar and wheat free baking as possible. This is NOT sugar free, but I have used honey and maple syrup to cut it down a little. All the flour use was Doves Farm gluten free. 

65g salted butter
70g golden caster sugar
1 tbsp honey
1 tbsp maple syrup
1 large egg
70g plain flour 30g Self Raising flour mix
25g ground almonds
Half tsp baking powder
Large pinch vanilla salt (or add vanilla and salt separately)
3 qtrs of a large orange, squeezed
1 tbsp choc/caramel sauce per cake (I used Tesco Finest)

These cakes are pretty rich and moist as it is, so you don't really need icing. However, if you want to make them pretty, consider a dusting of icing sugar over your favourite stencil!

    •    Preheat oven to 180 degrees C.

    •    Cream together butter, sugar, honey & maple syrup.

    •    Add egg & vanilla salt. Beat in well.

    •    Squeeze 3 quarters of a large orange and add to cake mix - watch out for pips!

    •    Weigh out all dry ingredients combine, sieve and add to mix.

    •    Spoon batter into muffin cases (in tray), filling until half full. Dollop 1 tbsp choc & caramel sauce into the middle of each cake and cover over with cake mix until two thirds full.

    •    Bake in the oven for 20-25 mins or until skewer comes out clean.

    •    Leave to cool.

    •    Eat!

For instructions on how to make your own chocolate and caramel sauce to make this an entirely home made creation, check back next week.

Let me know how you get on, in the comments below....enjoy!