Esmae's Orange & Almond Cake

By eva @myfrontburner
December 9, 2014
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Author Notes: My mother in-law Esmae served me this cake the first time I had dinner with them in their home in Sydney, Australia. It is deliciously bold, immensely moist cake made with almonds and whole oranges. After dinner she handed me a hand written recipe - which I still have! I recently discovered that this is a traditional Sephardic Jewish passover recipe. It has become one of my most treasured recipes. eva @myfrontburner

Serves: 10-12
Prep time: 20 min
Cook time: 2 hrs 30 min

  • 2 cara cara oranges or other naval oranges
  • Unsalted butter for greasing the pan
  • 2 cups (10 ounces) packed ground almond meal
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 cups cups sugar
  • 6 eggs
  1. Place oranges in a medium saucepan and cover with water. Bring to a boil over high heat, reduce heat and simmer gently until oranges are very soft, about 1 1/2 hours. Drain and set oranges aside to cool. When cool, cut into quarters and remove any seeds if necessary.
  2. Adjust oven rack to center position and preheat to 350°F. Butter a 9-inch spring form pan. Pulse oranges in food processor until pureed but still slightly chunky and set aside.
  3. In a small bowl, whisk together the ground almonds, baking powder and salt; set aside. Whisk sugar and eggs together in a large mixing bowl until combined, about 1 minute. Stir in orange puree and almond mixture and pour batter into prepared pan.
  4. Bake until a skewer inserted in the center comes out clean and the cake has browned evenly on the surface (if the cake has browned only around the edges, it is probably not completely cooked), about 55-60 minutes. Transfer pan to a wire rack. After 15 minutes, run a small spatula or paring knife around edge to loosen cake; let cool completely.

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