Makes 12 servings
I've always loved to use mandarin oranges in breakfast cakes and muffins; their special sweetness seems to be the perfect start to a day. This pound cake, which I do serve for brunch (and tea and dessert, as well), is simple but rich and dense. It has lots of sweet butter and plenty of eggs, which gives it a lovely golden color. A dusting of powder sugar makes it especially pretty.
10-inch 3-quart bunt pan
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
24 tablespoons (3 sticks) unsalted butter; softened,
plus 1 tablespoon for buttering the pan
2 cups sugar, plus 2 tablespoons
for sugaring the pan
6 large egg yolks
2 teaspoons pure orange extract
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 tablespoon grated fresh orange peel (about 1 orange)
1/2 cup buttermilk
One 11-ounce can mandarin oranges,
drained and lightly pressed in a sieve
to remove excess juice; juice reserved
1 tablespoon orange liqueur
3 tablespoons powdered sugar, for garnish
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter and sugar the bundt pan.
2. In a bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt.
3. Put the butter and sugar in a bowl and cream together using the electric mixer on high speed. Scrape down the bowl. Add the egg yolks, 2 at a time, beating for 20 seconds after each addition. Add the orange and vanilla extracts and orange peel, and beat using the mixer at low speed. Beat in the flour mixture in thirds, alternating with the buttermilk, beating for 45 seconds after each addition. Scrape down the bowl with a rubber spatula.
4. Add the mandarin oranges and beat on low speed until fully incorporated. Pour the batter into the prepared pan.
5. Bake for 55 to 65 minutes, or until a cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean. Remove the cake to a wire rack and cool for 10 minutes, then turn it out on the rack to cool to room temperature.
6. In a small, heavy saucepan over medium heat, reduce the reserved mandarin orange juice until thick and syrupy, about 3 tablespoons in all. Stir in the orange liqueur. Brush the glaze over the still-warm cake and let dry. Before serving, dust the cake with the powdered sugar.
Great American Desserts:
100 Mouthwatering Easy-to-Prepare Recipes
By Debbi Fields
Fireside; October 2000
272 pages; 70 full-color photographs
Recipe reprinted by permission.
This page created December 2000
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