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Moist Orange Cake

This delicious dessert evokes memories of an Australian country kitchen. Moist and citrusy, this tea cake is the ultimate afternoon delight.

Moist Orange Cake

“Farm life was always busy leaving not a lot of spare time for elaborate baking creations. When the pressure was on such as at harvesting time, you stayed with the repertoire of bakes you knew worked every time. This is one of them.”

Start to finish : 1 hour serves : 12

3/4 cup caster (superfine) sugar
1 1/2 cups self-raising flour, sifted
2 large free-range eggs, whisked
juice and finely grated zest of 1 large orange
full-cream milk
100 g butter, melted

Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F) (fan-forced 160°C/315°F). Grease a 19 x 10 cm (71/2 x 4 in) loaf pan and then dust lightly with flour. Line the base of the pan with a double thickness of baking paper.

Put the sugar, sifted flour, eggs, orange zest and juice made up to 1/2 cup (125 ml/4 fl oz) with milk into an electric mixer. Pour the butter on top and beat on medium speed for 3 minutes. The batter should be smooth and fluffy.

Fill the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top. Bake for 35–40 minutes or until a skewer inserted in the centre comes out with a few tiny moist crumbs clinging to it. Cool on a rack for 5 minutes before turning the loaf out.

Icing

When cold ice the cake with icing made by blending together 2 cups sifted icing (confectioners’) sugar and 2 tablespoons of orange juice.

What Does It Mean When …..

  • Syrup oozes (called beading) from the meringue—incorrect ratio of sugar to whites; the sugar has not dissolved; overcooking or the egg whites are either too cold or too fresh.
  • The meringue cracks—the sugar has not dissolved or the egg whites are either too cold or too fresh.
  • The meringue is a pale straw colour—the oven temperature is too high.
  • Meringues become soft after baking—they are either undercooked; the sugar to egg-white ratio is not right; or they’ve been made on a very humid day.

Extract from ‘Apple Blossom Pie’ by Kate McGhie. Published by Murdoch Books out September 1 $49.99

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