A blog for people who love to cook, eat, and failing that, read about it.
Wednesday, 10 August 2011
Cardoman Caramel Oranges
Like a giant sweetie
Although I'm no pudding fiend, a little taste of something sweet at the end of a meal always goes down well. When there may not be room for a big old bowl of desert, there is always room for this dish which is less like a pudding and more like a jewelled twinkly offering pulled out from the fridge just before serving. It can be made in advance making it great for when you are entertaining, and just looks so damn pretty! It's based on Nigella's recipe, which I came across by accident, when dreaming of the orange cardoman pud the Boyfriend's mum makes. It turns out orange and cardoman are a very happy marriage.
Suitably bashed pods
Serves four. Remove the skin and pith from four sweet oranges, and slice into rounds approx half a cm thick. Arrange in a shallow bowl/dish so they all lie flat and in a single layer. Bash 6 cardoman pods and add to a saucepan with 400g caster sugar and 200ml water, bring to the boil, swirling (don't stir) to dissolve and let it simmer until the mixture turns a lovely amber colour. Cue a bit of impatience and 'is it amber yet??' and my friend Hannah asking 'Do you ever just want to stick your finger in the pan to see how much it will hurt?'. No Hannah. No. Once it has changed colour, quickly (but carefully) pour over the oranges and stick in the fridge until needed. The oranges become encased in the cardoman scented, now hard barley sugar-like caramel. Nigella serves it with Greek yoghurt but I like it on it's own.
Probably a good idea to keep people like Hannah out of the kitchen when you make this.