Childhood memories of fresh Florida citrus in Winter, sustained me during my teens and twenties in Michigan. Though beautiful, shining oranges, lemons and grapefruit would glisten in the produce sections of our local grocer I knew they were sprayed, tired and a little old, traveling thousands of miles in a truck their essence was long gone. Over the last four years living in Northern California my inner child absolutely delights in the incredible local citrus varieties all around! Right in my own neighborhood there are dozens of different grapefruit, lemons, limes, oranges, tangerines, kumquats, etc. Citrus season is one of my favorites, in the Winter there is nothing like picking oranges off the tree and letting the juice drip down your chin in the sun.
Blood oranges by far, are my favorite, always have been.
For a recent catering I decided to showcase them in the wonder of a cupcake…these will quickly become a favorite and possibly a staple in the Winters for you. Get creative with your citrus, pick your favorites to play with. Remember, you don’t need much sweetener at all because of the natural sugars in the citrus. Enjoy!
Flourless Almond Blood Orange Cupcakes
Makes 12 cupcakes
4 large or 6 small Blood Oranges
3 tbs Tapioca Flour
2 tsp. Xantham Gum
1 cup date or coconut sugar
1/3 cup warm water
3 cups Almond Flour (grind almonds yourself in a food processor or Vitamix, skins on or off)
1 tsp Sea Salt
2 tsp. Baking Powder
1 tbs. Ground Cinnamon
1 tbs. Ground Ginger
1 tsp. Ground Cardamom
3 Blood Oranges, peeled and chopped
1 Lemon zested
First, boil the oranges in a medium pot for an hour then drain and cool, for ease I do this the night before.
Peheat the oven to 375 F, use paper baking cups lightly oiled (I use Coconut Oil).
Next, mix the Tapioca, Xantham and warm water till frothy. Chop the oranges, add the Tapioca/Xantham mix and sugar into a blender and puree. Set aside.
Mix the Almond flour, salt, baking powder and spices together in a large bowl. Add the liquid mixture to it and fold together. Fill your baking cups just to the top of the pan. Bake until a fork comes out clean, about 25-30 minutes. Note, these are fairly moist but will firm up as they cool.
Once they have cooled add the blood orange topping into the center & sprinkle with lemon zest. Embrace the sour, bitter and slightly sweet of this healthy dessert and please share