This cake was Nick’s contribution to the December CCC meeting. The theme for the meeting was festive cakes from the three counties of Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire and Yorkshire. We were hard pressed to find any cakes at all that you could say were uniquely from the three counties, let alone festive ones.
I did find a recipe for a “Kedleston marmalade cake”. After a bit of further internet research Nick found an orange and poppy seed cake on the food network website and decided to make that instead. You can see the recipe here.
I think his choice of cake was influenced a bit by the video. If a bloke is going to make a cake it’s good if it’s a bloke’s recipe! Typically he followed the recipe to the letter and it turned out perfectly. It was a very moist cake, more like a dessert cake than an afternoon tea offering. A lot of its moistness came from the orange syrup drizzled over it after baking. If we were to make it again we would probably use about half of the quantity stated in the recipe. But it was delicious, the flavour of the oranges and the almonds coming through with a little bit of crunch from the poppy seeds.
Of course he then had to connect it somehow to the three counties for the CCC event. He called it the “Rufford House Welcome Cake” and told the story of visiting monks from foreign lands bringing exotic foods as gifts to Rufford Abbey and the host monks baking a cake to welcome them.
It was all nonsense of course, but it sounded good. I wonder how many people believed it and how many thought “I bet he made that up”! We didn’t let on, naturally !!
I am submitting this recipe to this month’s Alphabakes Challenge, organised by Ros of The more than occasional baker, and Caroline of Caroline Makes. The letter this month is “Z” and you can see the details here.
I confess that when Nick announced that he was making a “zesty orange and poppy seed cake” for his CCC contribution my first thought was that it sounded lovely and the second was that I might just save it for a future post as it could come in very handy. The letter Z was bound to turn up sooner or later ~ and now it has !!
For the cake
2 medium oranges
3 large eggs
250 soft brown sugar
290g ground almonds
1 rounded tsp baking powder
1 rounded tsp poppy seeds
For the syrup
juice of 1 medium orange
4 tangerines or satsumas
150g golden syrup
First, make cook the oranges by boiling them in water for about thirty minutes until tender. Drain and place in a bowl of cold water to stop them from cooking any further. Cut into chunks, remove any pips and reduce to a pulp in a food processor.
Preheat the oven to 180°C / 160° fan / gas mk 4. Grease and line (bottom and sides) a 23cm round springform cake tin.
In a food mixer (or by hand), beat the eggs and sugar for 4-5 minutes until pale and thick. Fold in one third of the ground almonds, then add the rest along with the baking powder, orange pulp and poppy seeds.
Spoon the mixture into the prepared tin, level the top and bake for 45-50 minutes until the cake is golden brown and passes the skewer test. Cool in the tin for 10 minutes then turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely.
While the cake is in the oven, make the topping. Slice each tangerine into 8 or 9 slices, discard the ends and put them into a saucepan with the orange juice and golden syrup. Boil for 12-15 minutes until the skins are tender and the syrup has reduced a little. Transfer to a dish to cool completely.
When the cake is cool, prick with a skewer and drizzle the orange syrup over. Decorate with the tangerine slices.
Cuts into 12-14 slices.