For me, mandarin oranges are part of our family's holiday season traditional foods, and this easy mini mandarin orange cake recipe takes advantage of a fruit full of the comforting aromas of the coziest time of the year.  Treat yourself to an amazing dessert!

FOR THE CAKE – 1 stick of salted butter [113 grams, 4 ounces] at room temperature, plus extra to grease the pan – 1 cup of all-purpose flour [120 grams, 4.2 ounces], plus extra to dust pan – ½ teaspoon of baking soda – ½ cup of sugar (white, granulated) [200 grams, 7.1 onces] – 2 egg of (medium), at room temperature – 4 tablespoons of mandarin juice – ¼ teaspoon of mandarin zest FOR THE SYRUP – The rind of a quarter of a mandarin orange – 1 cup of mandarin juice – ¼ cup of powdered sugar – Seeds of ½ vanilla pod, or 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract


Preheat oven to 350 ºF [175 ºC]. Grease the molds with butter (or cooking spray) and dust with flour the cake pan or mini-bundt tray. If you're using silicone molds, do not dust them with flour.

Step 1

Sift flour and baking soda together. Set aside. In a mixing bowl beat the butter and sugar over medium speed using the hand mixer or stand mixer and paddle attachment until it turns a lighter color (about 1 minute). Scrape the sides with a spatula midway to incorporate the unmixed parts that may stuck to the sides.

Step 2

Add eggs, one at a time, beating 30 seconds between each egg. Add the mandarine juice beating until the cake batter has been mixed in thoroughly. Increase the speed to maximum and add the flour in four portions, waiting until each quarter has been thoroughly incorporated before adding more.

Step 3

Add the zest. and fold it in with a spatula. Pour into the prepared pan(s).

Step 4

Bake for 25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack to room temperature before removing it from the pan.

Step 5

Make the syrup and candied peels, wash the mandarine rind. Scrape off the white layer from the inside. Chop into very thin slivers. Mix 3 cups of water, juice, sugar, vanilla, and boil over very low heat until the liquid has reduced to half a cup (40-60 minutes).

Step 6

When it's time to serve, drizzle the cakes with the syrup and serve garnished with the candied peels.


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