When I was a teenager I simply adored oranges.
I'd drink glass after glass of orange juice, not able to get enough of it's sweet tart flavour. And I just loved peeling an orange and slowly devouring each segment, it's sticky juice dripping down my chin. I'd wipe away the juice with my fingers and then greedily lick each one, savouring the last of it's sweet juice.
My Mum claimed my love of oranges was a result of her craving oranges while she was pregnant with me, but really, what is there not to love about this gorgeous fruit?
Oranges are loaded with vitamins and minerals, not just the vitamin c we usually associate with oranges, and the perfume that a freshly peeled orange emits is simply intoxicating. Intoxicating enough that a peeled or zested orange can be detected rooms away, as was the case with my husband who came into the kitchen to investigate what I was doing with oranges.
One of the things I also love about oranges is the zest. The intense burst of orange flavour it gives anything it's added to is like fireworks for the tastebuds. Explosive zing after explosive zing, and that perfume delights the senses.
So when I was sent a crate of oranges by Citrus Australia as part of their Go Orange campaign I had to make something that incorporation both the zest, juice and flesh.
This Vanilla & Orange cake is a celebration of oranges and bursting with orange flavour - from the perfumed zest, juice and orange segments crowning the top of the cake. Also, for a cake, it's surprisingly low in sugar, thanks to the natural sweetness of oranges. The final touch was a sprinkling of sugar, which I then bruleed with a blow torch, but omitting this step doesn't detract from the finished cake.
So tell me, what is your earliest memory of oranges and what is your favourite way to enjoy oranges?
Vanilla & Orange Cake
- 100 g of butter 3.5 oz
- 90 g of brown sugar ½ cup
- 1 vanilla bean seeds scraped
- zest of 2 oranges
- 2 large eggs
- 210 g of plain flour 1½ cups, all purpose
- 2 tsp of baking powder
- ½ tsp of baking soda
- ⅔ cup Greek yoghurt
- ½ cup orange juice
- 3 oranges segmented
- 1 tbs sugar (optional for bruleeing the top)
- Preheat the oven to 180 celsius (350 fahrenheit) and place the butter, vanilla seeds, orange zest and brown sugar in a bowl of an electric mixer and cream until pale and golden. Place the orange segments in a bowl and add the vanilla pod to the orange segments and toss to combine.
- Add the eggs to the creamed butter and sugar, one at a time, beating well between each addition. Sift the flour, baking soda and baking powder, and fold through. Finally add the Greek yoghurt and orange juice and mix until just combined. Place the mixture into a 22cm round non stick spring form tin that has been lined with baking paper and smooth the top.
- Starting from the outside, place the orange segments in a circle, slightly overlapping, and repeat until the whole cake is covered. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, or until a cake tester comes out cleanly. Cool on a wire rack.
- When the cake is cooled sprinkle with sugar and use a kitchen torch to gently brulee the top.
These pictures and the recipe had me out in the wind and rain checking to see if I have any ripe oranges on my tree yet! Not quite - but it won't be long until I'm eating this burnished beauty.
Tiffany | baking at tiffanys says
I love oranges too--more than lemons. I remember eating something close to half a dozen oranges in one sitting when I was growing up. This cake looks delicious, and I love the bruleed top. Beautiful!
Looks delicious! lovely crumbs
I love oranges. Always have and probably always will. growing up I think it was more or less the only fruits available to us, except the apples and pears, and I loved the juiciness of it. Now I actually don't eat them as often as I should in their natural shape, but I do love to back with them and this cake looks totally fabulous!
My Kitchen Stories says
I cant say I love oranges but I certainly love cakes and oranges make a great cake. This one looks completely delicious and a great idea.
I do love a good orange. My mum loves them too but hates how they make your hands smell (I love it) so always asks me to peel them for her if I'm around! This cake looks gorgeous - the perfect celebration of delicious citrus fruit.
A delightful cake! That flavor combination is heavenly.
I am so much loving the brulee on the cake! Oranges are one of my fav. We had a orange tree and that was my fav corner in the backyard 🙂
Maureen | Orgasmic Chef says
I love oranges too. I eat one nearly every day. This cake would be perfect today. Love the top!
Laura (Tutti Dolci) says
What a fabulous cake, the bruleed top is so pretty!