Fruit-filled clementine cake

Fruit-filled clementine cake

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(9 ratings)

Prep: 30 mins Cook: 2 hrs, 10 mins Plus chilling


Serves 8 - 10
A beautiful, moist gluten-free cake packed with zingy citrus flavours, wonderful for Christmas

Nutrition and extra info

  • Vegetarian
  • Gluten-free

Nutrition: per serving

  • kcal695
  • fat34g
  • saturates15g
  • carbs93g
  • sugars83g
  • fibre3g
  • protein9g
  • salt0.36g
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  • 4 small clementines



    The smallest and sweetest variety of tangerine is sweet and tangy, contains no seeds and is…

  • 200g unsalted butter, softened, plus extra for greasing
  • 140g raisin
  • 140g sultana
  • 140g currant
  • 100g glacé cherry, quartered
  • 2 tbsp brandy



    Brandy is a distilled spirit made from virtually any fermented fruit or starchy vegetable.…

  • 200g dark brown sugar
  • 3 eggs, beaten



    The ultimate convenience food, eggs are powerhouses of nutrition, packed with protein and a…

  • ½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp mixed spice
  • pinch ground cloves
  • 140g polenta



    An Italian storecupboard staple, polenta has its roots in the peasant cuisine of northern Italy…

  • 1 tsp baking powder (we used Fiddes Payne, which is gluten-free)
    Baking powder

    Baking powder

    bay-king pow-dah

    Baking powder is a raising agent that is commonly used in cake-making. It is made from an alkali…

  • icing sugar, to decorate (most are gluten-free, but check the packaging)
  • 100g ground almond

For the topping

  • 4 clementines



    The smallest and sweetest variety of tangerine is sweet and tangy, contains no seeds and is…

  • 140g caster sugar


  1. To make the cake, place the clementines in a small pan, cover with water and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook for 1 hr or until tender. Drain and cool.

  2. Heat oven to 180C/fan 160C/gas 4. Butter a 20cm springform cake tin and line the base with a disc of buttered baking parchment. Cut the cooked clementines in half and remove any pips. Place in the bowl of a food processor and pulse until finely chopped but not puréed.

  3. Combine the raisins, sultanas, currants, cherries and brandy in a bowl. Add the clementine pulp and mix well. Cream the butter and sugar together until pale. Add the beaten eggs, a little at a time, mixing well between each addition. In another bowl, combine the spices, ground almonds, polenta and baking powder. Fold into the creamed mixture along with the dried fruit and clementine pulp.

  4. Spoon into the prepared tin and smooth the top. Bake on the middle shelf of the oven for 30 mins. Reduce the oven temperature to 160C/fan 140C/gas 3 and continue to cook for a further 40 mins. You may need to loosely cover the top of the cake with a sheet of baking parchment for the final 20 mins to prevent it browning too quickly. Cool in the tin for 30 mins before turning out onto a cooling rack.

  5. To make the topping, slice the clementines to a 5mm thickness. Tip the sugar into a saucepan with 140ml water and cook over a low heat, stirring often, until the sugar has dissolved. Put the clementine slices in the pan and stir through. To keep the clementines submerged in the syrup, cut out a circle of greaseproof paper to fit into the pan and place over the fruit. Cook over a low heat for 1 hr until glossy and translucent. Remove and spread out over greaseproof paper to cool.

  6. To serve, dust the whole cake with icing sugar, then arrange the clementine slices, overlapping, over the top of the cake.

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Comments, questions and tips

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31st Oct, 2011
How long does this cake keep for?
28th Dec, 2010
I used only 3 clementines. I peeled them and cooked the flesh in microwave for 5 minutes or until soft and 'mashable'. Leaving the skins on the clementines makes the cake too bitter The cooking time for this cake is far too short. I gave mine 30 minutes at !60C (fan) and a further 65 minutes at 140c (fan); it was well received.
29th Nov, 2010
How long will this cake keep for?
12th May, 2010
We've tried lots of G/F cake recipes since my other half was diagnosed coeliac earlier this yr. The many variants on choc mousse cake are lovely but very rich for day to day. This fruit cake recipe is the best general G/F cake we've found...its fantastic!
19th Dec, 2009
Marly, I don't peel the clementines. I don't know if this is correct but it works for me!
16th Dec, 2009
This sounds delicious, but should I peel the clementines first, or really leave them whole at stage 1?
12th Dec, 2009
Made this cake it looks lovely,may even marzipan and decorate it with royal icicng for alternative to xmas cake.
25th Feb, 2009
I had the same problem as PC the first time I cooked this. The second time I made it I extended the cooking time which gave a better, but not perfect, result. Despite this it is absolutely delicious and my family love it. Definitely one of the best gluten-free cake recipes I have tried, so I still give it 5 stars.
15th Feb, 2009
I've just tried this recipe for the third time and I keep ending up with an undercooked centre, I followed the instructions and even tried the higher temperatures in my fan oven - where am I going wrong?
Sunshine NM
21st Dec, 2016
Are you at altitude? I am at altitude (7,300 ft or 2225 m), so I often have troubles such as you described. The reduced air pressure at my altitude reduces the boiling point of water considerably, which causes a lot of trouble when one bakes. As a work around the altitude problem, I bake this cake in a two-part ring pan, such as is used to bake an angel food cake. I do not use a one-piece bundt-style ring pan in fear that I might not be able to get the cake out of such a pan. I also "strengthened" the batter by adding an extra "fistful" of maize flour. I do not know how many grams that would be. Also, I did not have access to polenta (hard to come by in my deeply rural part of New Mexico), but I grow "painted mountain" flour corn for myself, which I grind when I want to make this cake. It grinds to a very nice pinkish flour, although one must sift it to get out the chaff. The sifting is very important if you have ground the grain yourself. Also, the cake is not pink, the colors of the other ingredients overwhelm the pink of my flour. I also baked the cake considerably longer than mentioned in the recipe above... an extra hour, one time, and a bit more than that another time. I did not even bother to do a toothpick test until I saw browning on the top, which happened an hour after the cake would have been finished if I had been at sea level. I have made this cake three times now, not counting the one in the oven right now. It is a very nice cake, a bit of normal food, finally... satisfying a nostalgia for my mother's cake, which I have not been able to eat for some years now, since the coeliac diagnosis. I should mention/warn that maize can be a bit difficult to grind at home. It will break many home electric mills, some of which grind too fine for this sort of cake. I have a very substantial hand mill to produce coarsely ground meal for when I want that (and an electric mill to grind the sifted coarse meal when I want a fine flour). In another month, if there will still be clementines, I will try this cake again but use Hopi blue corn to make the flour. I expect it will just make a darker colored cake (not a blue cake). I am the only one here who eats this cake. For some reason, most Americans do not like fruitcake, as they would call this, and I come in for a lot of teasing when I make this. Still, it is a very nice cake. It makes me happy. I am most grateful to the author of this recipe.


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