My plain Jane birthday cake: Coffee orangette

I may come come up with fancy cakes at home, but I am a firm believer that a birthday cake must be made at home.  I think I get that belief from my grandmother.  She was the first one I saw baking in my family. She would make the simplest and loveliest cakes at home. For birthdays, she would deck them up with  some gems and tutti-frutti. None of her cakes ever had icing or ganache or any frosting- yet they were the yummiest. Happy memories of summer vacations spent devouring her bakes.

February brought with it erratic weather , the child’s landmark 6 months and the husband’s birthday. Determined to bake his bake at home, I foraged through innumerable ideas and recipes on the internet. My search stopped at this. Simple yet impressive, the combination of coffee and citrus appealed to me. This is the 3rd or 4th recipe I’ve tried from Saee’s blog and I am delighted to inform you that they’ve all given me good results. Thank you!

You must hop over to her blog for the original recipe. I made some minor changes because I didn’t have all the ingredients at hand and at 10 PM its hard to rush out to shop. What I’ve changed, I’ve marked out in italics.

Coffee and Orangette cake

Ingredients:
For the orangettes:

  • Peels of one orange. – I had to use a kinnu, didnt have oranges at home. 
  • 1 cup of sugar – I used 1/2 C sugar.
  • 1 cup of water
  • Water for blanching
  • 50 gms. dark chocolate- I had to use milk chocolate since I had only that. I would recommend dark chocolate- goes better with the orange.

For the cake:

  • 2 eggs
  • 200 gms. flour
  • 120 gms. sugar
  • Juice of half an orange- I used the juice of one whole kinnu
  • 100 gms. butter
  • 50 mls. coffee decoction- I used Bru instant coffee- about 1.5 tbsp mixed with a little water.
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 2-3 orangettes- I used mined chopped finely to mix with the batter. 

For the ganache:

  • 50 gms dark chocolate- Again, I was stuck with milk chocolate 😦
  • 2 tbsps. cream- I used Amul cream.

Method:

To make orangette:

  1. Peel the orange/Kinnu and remove the fibrous white bits. That’s the bitter part. 
  2. Cut the peel into strips, about ¼ centimeters in breadth. I blanched them first and then cut them to the size I wanted. I think it works well both ways.
  3. Blanch the strips of peel in water.
  4. Add the sugar to the water and boil to make a syrup. Add the blanched orangette and cook till translucent.
  5. Strain and dry on parchment for 4-5 hours.  I didn’t have time so I drained them well and used them immediately. I highly recommend allowing them to dry and set. Mine were too limp and resultant I had to chop them up. The missing orangette strips impacted the final look of the cake. 
  6.  To dip the orangette strips in chocolate, melt the chocolate  and dip strips halfway. Cool and allow to set.

To make the cake:

  1. Sieve together flour and baking powder.
  2. Mix eggs, butter and sugar with a beater.Add the orange juice and coffee and blend.
  3. Add the flour and the chopped orangettes. Mix lightly.
  4.  Pour batter into a lined tin and bake at 170 – 180 degrees centigrade for about 40 minutes
  5. Remove from pan and when cool.

To decorate the cake:

  1. Make ganache by mixing cholcolate and cream and heating in a microwave or double boiler.
  2. Pipe this cooled chocolate mix in a patter of your choice.
  3. End by placing the chocolate dipped orangette strips.

Here is what my cake looked like.  The original one by Saee is far prettier.


 This is a delicious cake. Its got a lovely texture ( the butter plays a role) and the orange marries well with the coffee. This ones going to be made again soon!

 

 

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