Dark Chocolate Orange Cake

by Nicola Moores

Cook time: 45 minsPrep time: 20 minsServes: 12

Good Food, Food Company is our series of easy, delicious recipes from some of our favourite cooks. Food to cook, eat and share in good company. Nicola Moores, Garden-to-Table cook and manager of the beautiful Te Arai Lodge shares her recipe for a Dark Chocolate and Orange Cake. Nothing says “celebration” quite like cake, and what better way to celebrate Mother’s Day than with this dark chocolate orange cake smothered in a silky smooth ganache laced with Cointreau?! This delectable moist cake may look and taste rather decadent, yet it’s gluten-, dairy- and refined sugar-free! Coming into winter I love to serve it with fresh citrus but it’s equally as delicious served with macerated fresh berries in the summer season.

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To Serve

Dehydrated citrus or nasturtium flower petals

Plain coconut yoghurt

Segmented citrus or fresh strawberries macerated in Cointreau, orange juice & honey


    Preheat the oven to 170°C fan bake mode.

    Grease a springform cake tin (we used an 18cm tin) with a little coconut oil and line with baking paper.

    Put the chocolate, coconut oil, orange zest and juice in a heatproof bowl over a saucepan of simmering water, making sure that the base of the bowl doesn’t touch the water. Stir until the chocolate and oil have melted and the mixture is smooth and glossy. Remove from the heat and set aside to cool. 

    Put the egg whites into the bowl of a stand mixer and beat on a high speed until soft peaks form. Transfer to another bowl and set aside.

    Put the egg yolks and coconut sugar into the bowl of the stand mixer and whisk on a high speed until thick and creamy. Add the melted chocolate and almond meal and gently mix until just combined. Add the eggs whites and gently fold until just combined.

    Transfer to the cake tin and bake in the oven for 40-45 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the centre of the cake comes out clean.

    Set aside to cool in the tin for 15 minutes before inverting onto a wire rack to cool completely.

    Meanwhile, make the ganache. Melt the chocolate in a heat proof bowl and set aside.

    Put the coconut cream and Cointreau in a heatproof bowl over a pan of simmering water and heat until just below boiling point, making sure that the base of the bowl doesn’t touch the water. Pour over the chocolate and whisk until smooth and glossy. 

    With the cake inverted, spread the ganache over the top and sides before decorating with either dehydrated citrus or nasturtium flower petals.

    Serve with plain coconut yoghurt and depending on the time of the year, either segmented citrus or fresh strawberries macerated in Cointreau, orange juice & honey.

    Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to a week, just make sure you bring the cake to room temperature before serving.


    Dark Chocolate Orange Cake

    Dark Chocolate Orange Cake Ingredients

    Dark Chocolate Orange Cake