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Yoghurt Orange Cake

This is one cake that is super simple, and in its simplicity, is so delicious! It's the cake that you make to eat in slices over the weekend. You don't need an occasion. It doesn't need to be anyone's birthday. You don't need to be having anyone over. It's just cake.


Simple and delicious. Huge tip - it's super delicious and soft when it's fresh and even better after it's been frozen and thawed! Give it a try, and let me know how you go!


Also, before we get into the recipe, make this cake with any citrus you love! The orange can be substituted for mandarin, lemon, lime or a combination!

Yoghurt Orange Cake

3 extra large eggs (raw cracked weight approx. 150g)

150 g caster sugar

zest of an entire orange

150 g unsalted butter, really, really soft (not completely melted)

170 g Greek-style yoghurt (I buy the little pots and use the entire amount)

50 g orange juice (the juice from the fruit creates a very soft, fruity undertone, for a real fruity punch, use bottled juice and eat the fruit)

140 g plain flour

140 g self-raising flour


Before you begin, pre-heat oven to 160C, or if your oven runs hot, 150C and line a loaf pan with baking paper (I line the base only and allow the cake to cling to the sides of the tin as it bakes).


Method:

Start the recipe by whipping the whole eggs, caster sugar and zest for a good 3-4 minutes with either a handheld or stand mixer until thick, pale and fluffy. Try not to focus on the timing as much as the texture of the eggs in the bowl; thick and fluffy eggs help to make the cake really soft and tender. While the eggs are whipping, soften the butter in the microwave - I love this part of the recipe because it means you don't need to have the butter at room temp before starting. I use short 10-15 second bursts and stir the butter between, the butter should look really pale, spreadable, soft and soupy but not completely melted. The super soft butter will hold more air pockets making the cake soft and light, whereas melted butter will make the cake dense. Whisk the yoghurt and super soft butter together, then add that to the whipped eggs and sugar; the mixture will separate and look curdled because the yoghurt is usually fridge-cold, but when the flour is added, it'll all come back together. Combine the two flours in a single bowl and sift over the egg, butter and yoghurt mixture. Start by sifting half, mix together with a large spoon or silicone spatula, add the orange juice and mix until combined and finally, sift the remaining flour over and mix again. The cake mixture should feel thick and soft. Pour the batter into the lined loaf pan and bake for 50-55 minutes, until golden and risen. Check the cake for doneness before removing from the oven. The cake will crack as it's baking; this is completely normal for Madeira-style cakes.

Let the cake cool for 5-10 minutes in the loaf pan before turning out and cooling for another 20-30 minutes on a cooling rack. I love to ice this cake when there's still a little heat remaining because it melts the icing, which becomes more like a glaze. For the icing, I sieve 120 g pure icing sugar, add 1 tsp very soft butter and approx. 20-30ml orange juice into a bowl and mix together to make a smooth paste. Pour the icing over the just-warm cake and smear it all over the top and sides of the loaf. Before it sets, I sprinkle over some toasted flaked almonds (if I have them) or just zest another orange and sprinkle that over the top to add some freshness. Allow the icing to set for another 20 minutes or so and that's it. The cake can be served as is.


Any uneaten cake can be stored in a sealed container in a cool place, away from direct sunlight, for 2-3 days. Or, freeze the cake for up to 3 months. I would love to know if you give this cake a try, and I hope you love it just as much as I do!


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