Recipe: orange pound cake
I’ve had a lot of people write to me or comment about Kaweah over the years sharing sweet words, concerns, and love for our crazy pup. There is a running joke here that once Kaweah passes on, my readership will dwindle to thirteen people. But seriously, I am truly moved that so many of you have such fondness for little Kaweah. She had a check up last week and her vet thinks she’s doing wonderfully for her age. We just try to ensure her happiness and comfort. So THANK YOU for all of the love and support you send over the interwebs!
It was sunny and cold, but now it’s sunny and warm. However, there is no new snow. Dear weather, WHAT THE HELL?! Sometimes you just have to suck it up and ski groomers in the sunshine. Don’t cry for me, the ski season could be worse (but this season has been pretty bad).
breck breck breckenridge
Oh heck, the flip side is that I can concentrate on getting work done without missing out on the powder… because there isn’t any powder. Instead, there is a lot of chocolate right now, which I can’t ski.
i spent the weekend working
with my assistant never more than a few inches away
And I set aside a little time to socialize with some of my amazing Colorado blogging ladies – a bunch of talented, smart, beautiful, and hi-larious women who happen to blog and live in Colorado. My friend, Denise, hosted the gathering and I promised her a cake. It came down to chocolate or lemon and I opted for lemon. It’s citrus season and while I know many of us associate lemon with summer (lemonade, lemony desserts, lemon cocktails), I love lemon in winter – it seems to brighten everyone’s outlook. Or maybe it just reminds us that summer is on its way?
lemon cake (despite the presence of lime slices)
wonderful lady friends
cake cross section at denise’s house
The cake is based on this recipe for lemon petits fours except I doubled it to make a four-layer 9-inch round cake with Meyer lemon curd, Meyer lemon buttercream, and limoncello simple syrup. I omitted the fondant icing because I frosted the cake with buttercream frosting.
I’ve been on a citrus roll because it all looks so good and feels heavy and firm in my hand. Jeremy and I have been on a steady routine of consuming grapefruits and oranges as well as cooking with plenty of limes and lemons. When I spied this recipe for a glazed orange pound cake in my latest issue of Fine Cooking, I had everything I needed to get started.
sugar, vanilla, powdered sugar, oranges, flour, eggs, butter, salt, baking powder
zest the oranges
zest and juice
I’ve mentioned this before, but I think it’s worth repeating – when a recipe calls for the zest or peel of any citrus, I use organic. So the recipe in my magazine called for four medium navel oranges, but I apparently bought large navel oranges. I only needed two to yield the necessary zest and juice. That said, leftover oranges are never a bad thing. Never. (Eat them, they are good for you.)
mix the flour, baking powder and 1/2 teaspoon of salt
add eggs one at a time to the creamed butter and sugar
don’t forget the vanilla
The batter is quick to whip up. Just remember that you only use 3/4 cup of the orange juice in the cake batter. The remaining quarter cup goes to make the glaze which you definitely don’t want to skip. Alternate the juice and flour into the batter.
beat in the orange juice
then add flour
pour the batter into a prepared loaf pan
smooth the top
You may be thinking that this would be a terrific cake to double and bake in a bundt pan. I was thinking that too, but opted out of that modification when I saw the loaf pan was to be lined with parchment. Try lining a bundt pan with parchment paper. Oy. The bake time is anywhere from 45 minutes to an hour, but it took me an hour and 25 minutes because my oven has been experiencing issues lately, which resulted in over-browned corners. This is why having an independent oven thermometer is important.
poke holes in the top
While the cake cools, it’s a good time to quickly whip up the orange glaze. You may be tempted to skip this part, but let me tell you what’s what: the glaze really gives that moist, juicy, orangey oomph to the cake. It’s lovely. Also, don’t skimp on the holes. The more holey the cake is, the more the glaze will soak into the cake rather than spill onto the pan underneath.
whisk the remaining orange juice into the powdered sugar
it should look something like this
you’re supposed to brush the glaze, but i just poured it (next time i’ll brush it)
We love this cake. It’s great for tea, breakfast, snack, dessert, you name it. I took half of it over to my neighbors, because Jeremy kept eating it, and then I promptly wished I had baked a second loaf. It’s easy to make and has a lovely bright flavor that will make you forget that it is winter – or at least take your mind off the fact that it hasn’t been snowing lately.
orange you gonna try it?
Orange Pound Cake
from Fine Cooking
1 tbsp butter for greasing the pan
9 oz. (2 cups) unbleached all-purpose flour
1 1/2 tsps baking powder
1/2 tsp + pinch salt
6 oz. (3/4 cup) unsalted butter, softened
1 1/4 cups sugar
3 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 tbsps fresh orange zest (from 2 large or 4 medium navel oranges)
1 cup fresh squeezed orange juice, split into 3/4 cup and 1/4 cup
5 oz. (1 1/4 cups) confectioners’ sugar
Preheat oven to 350°F. Set the rack in the center of the oven. Grease a 9×5-inch loaf pan with the extra butter, line the pan with parchment, then butter the parchment paper. Mix the flour, baking powder, and 1/2 teaspoon salt together in a medium bowl. Cream the butter and sugar together in the mixing bowl of a stand mixer with the paddle attachment on medium high until light and fluffy (about 2 minutes). Beat the eggs in one at a time, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed. Add the vanilla and orange zest. Don’t worry if the batter looks curdled, it’s fine. With the mixer on low, add a third of the flour, then add half of 3/4 cup of orange juice, then add another third of the flour, then the rest of the 3/4 cup of orange juice, and finish with the remaining third of the flour. Pour the batter into the pan and smooth the top. Bake 45 minutes to an hour or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean.
Cool the cake in its pan on a rack for 10 minutes. Run a knife around the sides and turn the cake out onto the rack. Remove the parchment and set the cake upright on the rack. Place the rack over a rimmed baking sheet. Mix the remaining 1/4 cup of orange juice with the confectioners’ sugar and a pinch of salt. Whisk until it is smooth. Use a toothpick to poke holes (about 3/4-inch intervals) in the top of the cake, making sure not to exceed 3/4 of the cake depth. Brush the glaze over the top and sides of the cake until it’s all used. Let the cake cool completely (about 2 hours). Serves 8.