Hello everyone! Hope you had wonderful and joyful winter holidays! As you may know from my previous posts, me and my husband have been to Russia, and it was a memorable and great trip. We celebrated New Year and Christmas eves with the whole family, met with friends, and had lots of fun with a snow: throwing snowballs, rolling and tumbling around, and exploring virgin and deep snow on foot! Once we almost were frozen to the bones, because it was -30C/22F (and the phone told me it was felt like -40C in the night)! But wool socks, mittens, fur hats and thick coats do wonders! 😀
So, I was torn by what recipe to start 2015 with. I decided to warm up cold days with a superb and fantastically delicious winter dessert -an orange cake. Oranges and mandarins may not be the most obvious fruits in baking, but for me it symbolizes the winter season. The smell of mandarins rind always brings back my childhood memories, when my parents bought them for the New Year eve. The cake is moist, bright, tangy, and delightful in both taste and texture. It is also great any time of the year. 🙂
Winter Orange Cake
You can use fresh orange slices as is, or cook them in a sweet water (1 cup water+1/3 cup sugar) for about 20-30 minutes on a medium heat – it helps to get rid of orange bitterness.
2 small oranges or 1.5 medium size, sliced
3 Tbsp demerara sugar
160g butter softened
120-150g golden caster sugar, depends on your taste
3 heaped tbsp orange jam (or fine-cut marmalade)
3 eggs, beaten
160g plain flour
1/4 tsp salt
1 1/3 tsp baking powder
40g almond powder (ground almonds)
1.5 medium-size oranges or 2 mandarins, finely grated zest and juice
3 heaped tbsp orange jam/marmalade
1-2 tsp orange-flavoured liqueur (Grand Marnier or Cointreau), optional
- Preheat oven to 180C. Grease the 18cm loose-bottomed cake tin. Sprinkle the base with demerara sugar. Arrange orange slices on the base, making overlapping layer.
- Beat the butter and caster sugar until pale, mix in marmelade and beaten eggs. Fold in flour, salt, baking powder, almonds, orange or mandarin zest and juice.
- Pour the batter into tin. Bake in the oven for 45-55 minutes, until golden and firm to touch.
- Allow to cool for a few minutes at room temperature.
- Meanwhile, make a glaze by warming 3 Tbsp jam and liqueur (if using) in a small pan with a little water.
- Carefully turn out the cake onto a serving plate, while it’s still warm. Prick holes in the cake. Spoon glaze over the cake.
- Serve warm! Enjoy!
Adapted from Jamie Oliver magazine/issue 26