I haven’t met anyone who doesn’t enjoy a Jaffa Cake. For those of you who don’t know what a Jaffa Cake is, they are a delicious mini cake (often eaten like a cookie or biscuit) which originates from England. It has a sponge base with an orange jelly centre, which is then covered in chocolate. I know there are a few steps in this recipe, but it’s definitely worth the effort!
I have made these a few times now and have learnt a few do’s and don’ts along the way. I cannot emphasize enough about greasing your muffin holes well, or you’ll have difficulty being able to remove them.
I’ve learnt if you over beat when adding the flour to the egg mixture, the sponge becomes quite dense. I use the electric mixer until it has just combined and then I finish mixing with a spatula.
And make sure to place the jelly on the top of the cakes (crust side up), don’t be tempted to flip them over and use the flat surface. If you do, after a day or so, what was the golden brown top becomes sticky and they will stick to your container. The smallest round cutter I had for the orange jelly was 4½cm. Although this worked fine, I would have preferred to use a slightly smaller size to give more room for the chocolate to stick to the sponge.
The first time I made the jelly, it seemed to go a little runny at room temperature. So I added a little extra gelatine the next time I made them, which has solved that problem. I’ve also removed the zest from the orange marmalade, as everyone in the family (except me) has issues when it comes to ‘bits’ in jam or preserves.
Update: I have made some changes to the original recipe, which is nearly 2 years old now. I have reduced the brown rice flour by 2 grams, the white rice flour by 4g, the tapioca starch by 2g and I’ve added some potato starch to the mix. I have also removed the xanthan gum completely. These changes have made the sponge cakes wonderfully light and soft in texture. I have also added some more instructions, new step-by-step photos and included cup and ounce measurements.
For accurate cup measurements, I sift the potato starch before measuring, so that there are no lumps/clumps. All cup measurements are firmly packed. I broke off small individual pieces from my large block of chocolate and each small piece weighed 5 grams (0.2 ounce). When the pieces were placed into a measuring cup, it was approximately a ½ cup.
18g (0.6 ounces or 2 tablespoons) brown rice flour
16g (0.6 ounces or 2 tablespoons) white rice flour
11g (0.4 ounces or 1 tablespoon) potato starch
8g (0.3 ounces or 1 tablespoon) tapioca starch
48g (1.7 ounces or ¼ cup) golden/raw caster sugar
2 large eggs, at room temperature
X1 85g packet of gluten free orange jelly crystals
½ teaspoon (2.5ml) unflavoured gelatine
1½ tablespoons (22.5ml) orange marmalade (rind removed)
125ml (½ cup) boiling water
90g (3.2 ounces or approx. ½ cup) dark or gluten and dairy free milk chocolate (I use this brand)
First, make the jelly in a small bowl by combining the jelly crystals, gelatine and marmalade, and carefully adding the boiling water. Mix well until the jelly has dissolved, then pour into a shallow tray or container. I used a plastic container which was approximately 14cm x 22cm. Once the jelly has cooled, place it in the refrigerator until completely set, which takes approximately 30-40 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 160C and liberally brush a 12-hole muffin tin with melted gluten and dairy free butter.
Sift the flours together and set aside.
To make the cakes, add some water to a small saucepan, bring it to the boil and then reduce the heat so the water is just simmering. Place a glass heatproof bowl over the top of the saucepan (make sure the base of the bowl doesn’t touch the water) and add the sugar and the eggs.
Start on a low speed until combined.
Turn the speed up to medium-high and continue to beat.
The egg mixture will start to increase in volume.
As the heat increases the egg mixture will start to thicken.
After a few minutes, the egg mixture would have thickened and increased in volume.
Next, add the flour and mix on a low speed until just combined. Take the bowl off the heat and very gently fold through any unmixed flour.
I pour the batter into a glass jug, as I find this way a lot easier to pour it into the muffin holes. Approximately ¼ fill each muffin hole with the batter and then bake for 9-10 minutes, until they are lightly golden in colour.
As soon as they come out of the oven use a small palette knife to go around the sponge to loosen it from the edge of the tin. Once the edges have been loosened, go around the sponge again with the palette knife and gently lift underneath, to loosen it from the bottom of the muffin tin. Transfer the sponge cakes to a cooling rack with a piece of baking paper underneath and allow the cakes to cool completely.
Once the cakes are completely cool, use a small round cutter (your cutter needs to have a maximum diameter of no larger than 4½cm or 1.77 inches) and cut out the discs shapes in the jelly. It will be necessary to use a small palette knife to gently and carefully loosen the jelly discs from the bottom of the container. Now place a jelly disc on the top of each cake.
You can microwave the chocolate until melted or you can melt the chocolate the old fashioned way. Heat some water in a small saucepan and place glass bowl over the top (make sure the base of the bowl doesn’t touch the water). Once the water has boiled, turn it off. Add the chocolate to the bowl and stir frequently until melted. Allow the chocolate to cool slightly, because if it is too hot, it will melt the jelly (I know this from past experience).
Use a teaspoon and pour some chocolate over each cake, making sure you seal the edges around the jelly and the cake. Then place to one side until the chocolate sets, or you can refrigerate to speed up this process.
Store the biscuits in the refrigerator in a single layer in an airtight container. Allow them to come back up to room temperature before eating.
Recipe by: The Gluten & Dairy Free Bakehouse
Note: all recipe oven temperatures shown are for a fan forced electric oven. Please refer to the below guide to help you adjust your oven accordingly. This recipe is shown in bold.
Oven Temperatures Chart
130C = 110C fan = 250F = Gas mark 1
150C = 130C fan = 300F = Gas mark 2
160C = 140C fan = 320F = Gas mark 3
180C = 160C fan = 350F = Gas mark 4
190C = 170C fan = 375F = Gas mark 5
200C = 180C fan = 400F = Gas mark 6
220C = 200C fan = 425F = Gas mark 7
230C = 210C fan = 450F = Gas mark 8