What can I say? I’m a boerseun! So, it goes without saying that I’ve always believed that mieliepap could give polenta a run for its money. And no, it’s not just for breakfast. Treat mieliepap like polenta and it opens up a whole new world of possibilities! And to be honest, I find mieliepap cake just that little bit smoother, less grainy and, in short, simply perfect. Next, of course, comes the flavour, and what I just can’t resist is showering a crowdpleaser like this in equally pleasing flavours of mandarin and chocolate. Using a local fave like ClemenGold for the occasion just makes sense.
For the cake
225 g (245 ml) unsalted butter (at room temperature)
225 g ( 270 ml) caster sugar
200 g ground almonds
100 g almond sprinkles – its those small blocks of almonds
1 vanilla pod
grated zest of 2 ClemenGold® mandarins
juice of 1 LemonGold® seedless lemon
125 g (200 ml) maize meal (mieliepap)
2,5 ml baking powder
1 ml salt
For the ClemenGold marmalade
4 whole ClemenGold® mandarins
250 ml water
400 g (500 ml) white sugar
For the chocolate ganache
300 g good quality milk chocolate
250 ml cream
for the cake
Preheat the oven to 160 °C. Line the bottom two 18 cm loose-base cake tins with baking paper and spray with edible food spray.
Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy before adding the ground almonds and almond sprinkles. Then, using the back of a teaspoon, scrape out the vanilla seeds and add to the mixture. Mix well.
Add the eggs one by one and mix well after each addition.
Add the mandarin zest, lemon juice, maize meal, baking powder and salt. Mix well and divide the dough between the cake tins. Place the cake tins on top of baking tins (in case the butter seeps out of your cake tins) and place them in the oven. Bake for 45 minutes.
Take out and let it cool for 5 minutes in the pans before turning them out and cool further.
For the ClemenGold marmalade
Peel the ClemenGolds and julienne (cut into thin strips) the rind. Halve the peeled ClemenGolds and set aside.
Fill a medium saucepan with 500 ml water and bring to a boil. Add the julienned rind, boil for 10 minutes, and drain.
To the drained rinds in the saucepan, add 250 ml water, the halved ClemenGolds, and the sugar. Bring the mixture to a boil, letting it boil for 5 minutes while stirring frequently.
Reduce the heat and simmer for 40 minutes, stirring every 3-5 minutes.
Pour the contents into a sterilised jar. Let it cool slightly before closing with a lid. The marmalade will firm as it cools. Once opened, store in the fridge.
For the ganache
Chop the chocolate into small pieces. Heat the cream to just before boiling and pour over the chocolate.
Stir until the chocolate has melted. Let it cool for at least two hours before piping it onto your cake.
To assemble your cake
Spread a nice thick layer of your marmalade on top of one cake, then place the other cake on top.
Spread a thin layer of the ganache on top. Pipe the ganache roses on top of your cake and decorate with chocolate disks, dried ClemenGold peels and fresh ClemenGold slices. Dust the toasted, flaked almonds with icing sugar and use them to decorate the top. For a luxurious finishing touch, decorate with gold leaf.