Cardamom gives this almond cake a wonderful, delicate perfume.
1/2 cup neutral cooking oil, plus extra for greasing
12 cardamom pods or 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
1 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups almond meal
3/4 cup superfine sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
a pinch of salt
zest and juice of 1 orange, plus curls of peel from 1 orange, to serve
1/2 cup dairy-free plain yogurt (not soy-based to keep it SoF), plus 1 heaping tablespoon per person, to serve (optional)
2/3 cup unsweetened non dairy-based milk (not soymilk to keep it SoF)
2 teaspoons vegan apple cider vinegar
1. Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Grease the sides of a loose-bottom 9-inch cake pan and line the bottom with parchment paper.
2. If using cardamom pods, smash each one to split and release the seeds, then grind to a powder using a mortar and pestle. Put the ground cardamom into a large bowl with the flour, almond meal, sugar, baking powder, and salt and mix well.
3. Reserve 1 teaspoon of the orange zest, then whisk together the remaining zest, the orange juice, 1/2 cup of the yogurt, 1/2 cup of the oil, the milk, and vinegar, then pour into the dry ingredients. Mix just until combined (overmixing can make cakes chewy).
4. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 40 minutes, or until risen, firm, and deep golden and a toothpick comes out clean. Let cool in the pan for 10 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack and cool completely.
5. If using, whisk the remaining zest into the remaining yogurt and serve with slices of the cake.
Recipe excerpted from Leon Fast Vegan by Rebecca Seal, Chantal Symons & John Vincent. Copyright 2019 Hachette Book Group.
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