A few days ago I received the most generous gift from my friend Terisa in California. A box filled with infinite varieties of citrus, guava and persimmons, which grow right on her property. See the array on my last post. Quite remarkable. Also quite hard to visualize given the lack of sunshine in the Pacific Northwest this time of the year. And my days in Florida feel like a dream these days.
Unpacking all the citrus onto my kitchen counter filled me with slight anxiety. Here I had been given all this bounty and the responsibility to do it justice. I began by slicing one of the oranges with the stem and leaves still attached. So sweet and juicy. The zest mixed into a jar of coarse sugar. You can only imagine.
I pureed the guavas just like Terisa had instructed and mixed the puree with a bit of sparkling water, orange juice and ginger. The persimmons were eaten like apples in a salad.
And then came this cake. A cake a seem to make over and over again. Heavy in citrus, tart from the yogurt and moist from a generous amount of almond flour. I made two bundt-cakes with this amount of batter but it is meant for a loaf bread pan (tall sides please!). I sprinkled the top with dried rose petals for a colorful effect as I gifted one of the cakes to a friend on her birthday. You could indeed add rose water to the batter.
Perfect for fika.
And then, there was Indian Beach on the Oregon Coast. My kind of beach. Pack a slice of citrus cake while we are at it. xo
Citrus and yogurt cake
makes one loaf-pan or two small bundt-pans
1 cup (140 g) superfine brown rice flour
1/2 cup (50 g) almond flour
1/4 cup (30 g) tapioca starch or cornstarch
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 1/4 cup (250 g) natural cane sugar
2 teaspoons finely grated orange zest
2 teaspoons finely grated lemon zest
12 tablespoons or 1 1/2 sticks (170 g) unsalted butter, room temperature
1/2 cup Greek-style whole-milk yogurt
3 eggs, room temperature
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 350F (180C). Prepare your pan by greasing it with soft butter or non-stick cooking spray. Set aside.
Whisk together the first 6 ingredients in a bowl. Set aside.
Mix the sugar, orange and lemon zest in the bowl of a stand mixer. Rub the sugar and zest between your fingers to release their natural oils. This will make it more fragrant. Add the soft butter to the bowl and with a paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugar mixture together on medium high speed for 2 minutes until light and creamy. Make sure you scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl as well as the paddle to make sure all the butter is well mixed.
Add the yogurt and mix until combined. Add the eggs, one at a time while mixing in between additions. Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl again. We need a very smooth mixture. Add the vanilla extract and the dry ingredients. Mix until combined and smooth.
Spoon the mixture into the prepared pan and bake for about 45 to 50 minutes or until the cake is done in the center. To see if the cake is done, insert a toothpick in the center of the cake and if it comes out dry and clean, the cake is done. Let the cake cool on a wire rack for 20 minutes, then invert it onto the cooling rack and let it cool for another 15 minutes or so. We want to glaze the cake when it’s room temperature but not too cold.
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar, sifted
1/2 teaspoon lemon zest
1/2 teaspoon orange zest
2 to 4 tablespoons lemon juice
Dried rose petals, optional as a topping
Whisk all ingredients together in a bowl until smooth (start with 2 tablespoons of lemon juice and see if it needs more). The glaze should be thick yet pourable.
Pour the glaze over the cake while it is still on the cooling rack. Collect the glaze under the cooling rack and pour it over the sides of the cake. Sprinkle the rose petals over the glaze. Let the glaze set for a few minutes before cutting into the cake.