Light and moist orange cake with lashings of heavenly raspberry curd and luscious silky white chocolate orange swiss meringue buttercream.
In my mind, orange cake is always rather underrated. It’s often forgotten, but when you are offered a slice, you remember how delicious it is. Undeniably moist and just sweet enough, it leaves you wanting more than one slice. For me, it brings back memories of when I was young and my mum would just whip up an orange cake for us to take to school for lunch. I always remember the beautiful aroma coming from the kitchen, and I always relished a slice hot out of the oven. Humble and unassuming, it’s the quiet achiever in the cake world.
This classic orange cake is made with a touch of almond meal, which gives it a beautiful texture. Not enough almond meal to make it dense, but just enough to keep it moist. It is perfect with a simple orange icing or just on it’s own with a cup of coffee. In some European countries, you’d even have it for breakfast.
For this version, I have paired with a irresistible raspberry curd, which was an experiment that totally paid off! It is a very simple recipe, made just like lemon curd but with raspberries insted. I also made the smoothest silkiest white chocolate orange swiss meringue buttercream to top it all off!! The combination of these flavours is just sublime and I better watch out or else I may eat the whole cake before I know it.
To decorate this cake, I used a watercolour effect with raspberry pink and orange coloured buttercream, then finished off with some simple piping with an open star piping tip. And just because I couldn’t help myself, I added a few macarons (because that’s just what I do!).
For all those white chocolate lovers out there (don’t be embarrassed just because it’s not real chocolate, because it tastes just as good!) try my Flourless Pistachio and White Chocolate Cake with Rose Vanilla Buttercream, or if you’re a traditionalist and like dark chocolate, maybe these Flourless Chocolate and Mixed Berry Mini-Cakes are for you.
- 190g butter, room temperature
- 160g caster sugar
- Zest and juice of 2 oranges
- 3 eggs
- 180g plain flour
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 60g ground almonds
- 250g frozen raspberries
- 2 eggs, plus 2 eggs yolks
- 165g caster sugar
- 80g chilled butter
- Zest of 1 lemon
- 5 egg whites
- 300g caster sugar
- 370g butter, cubed
- 100g white chocolate, melted
- ½ tsp natural orange flavour
- Pink and orange food dye (I used Americolor deep pink, super red and orange)
- Preheat oven to 170 degrees celsius. Grease two 6 inch cake tins and line with baking paper.
- Beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
- Add orange zest and juice and continue beating.
- Add eggs one at a time until combined.
- Add sifted flour, baking powder and almond meal, and stir until just combined.
- Divide between cake tins and bake for 35 minutes.
- Allow to cool in cake tins.
- Heat raspberries in a medium saucepan over a low heat until soft.
- In a food processor, puree raspberries.
- Pass raspberries through a fine mesh sieve to remove seeds and return to the saucepan.
- Add eggs, sugar, butter, and lemon zest, and whisk continuously over a low heat until thickened.
- Strain through a clean sieve and refrigerate.
- Heat egg whites and sugar in a heatproof bowl over a pot of simmering water (make sure the water is not touching the bowl). While continuously whisking, use a candy thermometer to monitor the temperature of the mixture. Heat the mixture to 60-70 degrees Celsius.
- Transfer the egg white mixture to the bowl of an electric stand mixer. You can do this with a hand mixer, but it does get rather messy. With the whisk attachment, beat the meringue at a high speed until it is thick and glossy and stiff peaks form.
- Switch over to the paddle attachment, and reduce mixer to a medium speed. Add butter one cube at a time, and mix until incorporated. The mixture may start to look curdled, but just keep mixing!
- Once you have a luscious smooth frosting, carefully add the melted white chocolate in a thin stream while continuing to beat. Add orange flavour, turn the mixer to a low speed and continue beating for another 5 minutes.
- Cut each cake in half so that you have 4 layers. Place the first layer on a serving dish or cake board.
- With a 1.5cm round piping tip, pipe a dam around the edge of the cake.
- Fill half way up the dam with a layer of buttercream and then top with a layer of raspberry curd. Repeat for all layers.
- Set aside two bowls with half a half a cup each of buttercream. Colour one bowl pink (I used a combination of Americolor deep pink and super red) and one bowl orange (I used Americolor orange).
- Cover the cake with the white buttercream and smooth the sides and top with a cake scraper.
- Using a small offset spatula, add small amount of orange and pink buttercream to the bottom half of the cake, then smooth with a cake scraper to create a watercolour effect.
- Using an open star piping tip, pipe a combination of pink, orange and white stars on the outer aspect of the top of the cake to create a wreath.
- You can leave the cake as it is now, or be creative and decorate as you wish - I just added a few cheeky macarons!