Make Ahead

Pioneer-Style Orange Cake

August 23, 2009
Photo by James Ransom
Author Notes

I'm calling this "Pioneer-Style" because I mixed it all by hand. The house we're renting isn't equipped with any sort of electric mixer. It worked out fine, but you don't have to do it that way. This recipe can be doubled to make a layer cake but I made one layer. Vacation isn't a time for architecture. —Giulia Melucci

  • Serves 8
  • Orange Cake
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, very soft
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 2 teaspoons orange zest
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1/4 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • Orange Cream Cheese Frosting
  • 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 cup confectioners sugar
  • 1 tablespoon fresh orange juice
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/3 cup sour cream
In This Recipe
  1. Orange Cake
  2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter an 8 inch baking pan.
  3. Beat the butter, sugar, and orange zest in a large bowl until creamy. Use an electric mixer if you have one.
  4. Add eggs one at a time, then the sour cream and orange juice followed by the dry ingredients mixing until just combined.
  5. Pour mixture into prepared pan and bake in the center of the oven for 30-35 minutes.
  6. Let cool in pan for 10 minutes, then invert onto serving plate.
  1. Orange Cream Cheese Frosting
  2. Beat the cream cheese and butter with an electric mixer if you're lucky enough to have one, if you're not, have courage, the job can still be done.
  3. Add the sugar, the orange juice, and vanilla, then the sour cream. Cover and refrigerate until firm enough to spread on cake. About 10 minutes.

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