Something bloody – Red orange cake and a glimse of my cake for Christmas

I have been promising this recipe for so long. According to the rule, I should have forgot about posting this recipe, but this is an exception. So far, I have only the Devil cake as the ‘proven safe’ recipe for chocolate cake, which I made for Mr. Bear’s farewell to his ex-company. For the regular yellow cake, I haven’t found such a ‘proven safe’ recipe, until I tried this blood orange cake recipe.

It surely is the recipe which will save me from any celebrational occasion, which goes well with cream and fruits. I hope it will save you too.

This type of orange is called ‘blood orange’ in Norwegian, due to its flakes of crimson colour which really resembles blood. I caught sight of it not very long ago, and was very interested in its special colour. It was even cheaper than regular oranges, maybe because the regular parts of the orange is not as sweet, but the bloody parts are sweeter.

I made this cake as a simple treat for a friend who came to help us with moving the sofa. Thus I didn’t have much time for decorating the cake or to take proper picture of it. I planned to coat it with butter cream, but the buttercream was a failure so I quickly switched to regular whipped cream, topped with some orange sections. I was glad with this plan B as I think this cake went very well with whipped cream, as with all kind of cakes.

The cake was soft and moist out of the oven, and if you eat it soon afterwards without exposing it to coldness or air, it will stay this way for at least 1 day. I kept this cake (without cream) under an airtight cake doom for 1 day and it preserves all the flavour. It was consumed very quickly. Luckily, both Mr.Bear and his friend need to watch their weights so they restrained from the last piece, hence my chance for some further pictures.

I happened to have a handful of fresh blue berries so as you can see, I threw some of them in the cake batter. But they didn’t really make a big difference. The cake was good by its own nature.

What I love about this cake is its simplicity, and honesty. Its caky taste, the tangy taste of orange balances with the fullness of whipped cream, and everything was soft to the touch and cute to the look.

The recipe is taken from the book ‘Den Store Boken om Baking’, the method is mine, because I want you to taste the same cake I show here. Blood orange is not required.

Orange cake

250 g flour

2 ts baking powder

40 vanilla powder (can use vanilla essence, optional)

340 g regular sugar

80 g unsalted butter, softened

3 eggs

2 ts shaved orange peels

2,5 dl orange juice (fresh)

I used only half the recipe for this above cake, and reduced about 10 – 20 g sugar for Mr.Bear’s health’s sake.


Pre-heat oven at 180 degree C.

Cream the butter and the sugar with electronic mixer until white and soft. Add the eggs, one at a time, wait til each well combined before adding the next one.

Add the shaved orange peels and vanilla essence (if you use vanilla sugar powder, add it together with the flour later). Mix till well combined.

Put flour, baking powder and vanilla sugar powder (optional) together, sive into the egg mixture in 3-4 batches, use a spatular or a wide metal spoon to fold the flour mixture into the egg mixture. Add in orange juice (in 2-3 batches) after each time siving, continue till the orange juice and flour mixture are used up, finishing with the flour mixture.

Pour the batter into a non-stick baking pan/form, if your pan sticks, coats it lightly with a layer of butter or oil, then dust with a bit flour. The batter will be thin enough to spread itself evenly in the pan, so you want to help the process, just sizzle the pan around a couple of times. Don’t bang the pan on a hard surface to chase out the air bubles, I haven’t seen any in mine. Cake goes into the pre-heated oven and no opening oven door until the cake surface is lightly golden.

The recommend baking time is 50 min, but you can keep a close eye on the cake as soon as you start to detect the nice smell coming out from the oven. Mine takes from 30 – 45 min depending on if I used full or half the recipe. Test the cake by inserting a knife tip into the thickest part of the cake. If the tip comes out clean of batter, the cake is done. Do not over bake the cake as it will lose part of its moisture and softness.

Serve cold with whipped cream frosting (full cream > 30% fat + 1-2 ts powder sugar) and fresh fruits.

Here is a glimse of the cake I made for this Christmas. It was a yellow pound cake, not so soft and not so good. Had I discovered this orange cake recipe before ….

Final note: If somehow the cake turns out to be not as soft and flavourful as I describe here, fake it. Drizzle extra orange juice (fresh) on the cake before icing with whipped cream, allow time for the cake to soak in. If you want to be boozy, add some orange-flavoured alcohol into the drizzling. You can use orange essence or orange-flavoured alcohol instead of vanilla essence if you prefer.


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