Saturday 11 May 2013

Bitter Orange and Poppy Seed Cake

The style of this cake is Arabian/Middle Eastern, but it uses a very British ingredient, classic thick-cut Dundee marmalade.

I really love this cake with its blend of traditional and new. It's something that almost everyone I serve it to has not tried before, but everyone comes away loving it.

Bitter Orange and Poppy Seed Cake

Serves: 8


3 tbsp good-quality thick-cut Marmalade (traditional Dundee marmalade is best)
150g (3/5 cup) natural yoghurt
3 eggs
175g (1 cup, scant) golden caster sugar
200g (1 3/4 cups) self-raising flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
175g (1 cup, scant) butter, softened
finely-grated zest of 1 orange
2 tsp poppy seeds, lightly toasted
For the Sticky Orange Topping:
juice of 1/2 orange
5 tbsp thick-cut Dundee marmalade


Melt the marmalade in a pan, take off the heat and beat in the yoghurt then set aside to cool.

Mix together the eggs, sugar, flour, baking powder, butter, orange zest and poppy seeds in a bowl. Beat until smooth then quickly work in the yoghurt and marmalade mixture.

Pour the batter into a greased loaf tin (about 20 x 10cm [8 x 4 in]) and mound it slightly in the centre so that the top of the cake forms a mound.

Transfer to an oven pre-heated to 160ºC (325ºF, Gas Mark 3) and bake for about 60 minutes, or until a skewer inserted into the centre of the cake emerges cleanly. Check the cake after 45 minutes, if it looks like it may be colouring too quickly, cover loosely with baking parchment and continue cooking until done.

For the topping, melt together the orange juice and marmalade in a pan. When the cake is ready, remove from the oven and allow to cool in the tin for 10 minutes. Turn out onto a wire rack and allow to cool until just warm. Spoon over the glaze and allow to cool completely before slicing and serving.

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