Clementine Cake
November 14, 2010, 8:15 pm
Filed under: Cakes, Desserts | Tags: , , , , ,

One of my graduate school roommates and friends, Alex Gutweiler, has one of the greatest dogs I have ever met.  Finn, a 5-year-old Border Collie, is an incredibly smart dog and is completely obsessed with playing with a ball or a frisbee.  She always caught the ball or frisbee in spectacular fashion.  Living with Finn, I had the opportunity to get to know Finn as well as play or go on runs with her.  When Alex and Finn moved to Washington D.C., I was sad to see both of them go.  At that point I knew that I had to find a dog similar to Finn.

In mid-January 2009 I found my dog, a Border Collie mix at a shelter in mid-Iowa.  A couple of days later I got in my car and drove five hours in the cold, snowy weather from Columbia to what seemed like middle-of-nowhere, USA to the shelter where I was introduced to Clementine.  Clementine and her 6 brothers and sisters were quite the bunch.  Clementine was no bigger than a football and was by far the sweetest, and shyest, puppy at the shelter.  She was perfect.  Our first night together I couldn’t sleep.  I watched her explore her new home and eat the puppy food that we brought home from the shelter.  During our initial walks together at the park, Clementine, the shy yet curious dog that many have now come to know, kept her distance behind me. Time quickly passed and distance rapidly shortened and soon we were walking, running and playing together.

In August, when we moved to Philadelphia, I was nervous she would not like the change from small town Missouri to the “big city” life.  I could not have been more wrong.  Clementine loved the smells of the city as well as our walks around Rittenhouse Square, our daily runs along the Schuylkill River trail, our trips to the local dog parks and of course playing with her best friend Juno, my neighbor’s Australian Shepherd.  Furthermore, it was in Philly that she found interest in squirrels and a taste for the dried geese poop found along the river trail.

I was so lucky to find Clementine.  There is nothing more satisfying than seeing how excited she gets when I get home each day.   When we go on our daily two, six, eight and sometimes ten mile runs I no longer listen to music.  Having her with me is just as good, and sometimes even better, than having a running partner.  It is amusing to read the articles in the paper that estimate how much a dog costs an owner each year.  I’ll admit that between the medicine, food, treats and occasional toy it is quite expensive, but the sacrifices I’ve had to make have been totally worthwhile.  Having Clementine is a reason to spend endless amounts of time outside, getting plenty of exercise, and having someone to keep you company on the most miserable of days.  For these reasons and countless others, I think everyone should have a dog and furthermore, I think most should go to a shelter and adopt.  There are so many dogs just like Clementine that need a home.  This post is dedicated to Clementine, not only because she is one of the greatest dogs but also because she is now two years old.  Happy Birthday Clementine!!!


Clementine Cake (from Smitten Kitchen)

Like my fantastic dog Clementine, this cake is a sweet, yet shy.  The ingredient list, consisting of only five clementines, almonds, eggs and a little sugar, does not appear to draw an attention-getting bark, but the aroma and taste of this moist cake is unforgettable.  Despite the short list of ingredients this cake does require a lot of attention.  You have to maintain an adequate water level while the clementines boil for two hours.  Handling the hot clementines is as much fun as cleaning up after a dog after she makes a mess, but the simplicity of the remainder of the recipe in addition to the wonderful smell and taste of this moist cake make it all worthwhile.

After preparing all the ingredients and adding it to the 8-inch springform pan, bake it in the oven for 45-50 minutes at 325 degrees.  Let it cool completely (I let it cool overnight) and then ice the cake with a simple powdered sugar glaze (1 tablespoon butter, 1 cup powdered sugar, 1/2 teaspoon vanilla, 2 tablespoons milk, 1/8 teaspoon salt) by allowing it to drizzle off a spoon and on to the cake.

This recipe produces a very delicious but also a very moist cake.  Feel free to allow it to bake longer, but don’t be fooled by the amount of moisture in the cake.  It is not a by-product of inadequate baking time, but rather do to the amount of oil found in the peels of the clementines as well as in the almonds.  After you make this Clementine Cake in your kitchen and right before you eat it, make sure you think of the sweetest dog in the world, Clementine, and wish her a happy birthday!


2 Comments so far
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You do such a great job with this blog! I love it! Have you considered any agility competition and training with Clementine? You would both be naturals at it and, I really think, love it!

Comment by Karleen Cole

needs more greenies.

Comment by Finn

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