Portuguese Orange Cake
This from scratch, yet simple, Portuguese orange cake recipe is moist and fragrant, with the most unreal bright orange flavour. It's definitely one of the best cake recipes I've got. Similar texture to a sponge cake, but with more moisture than even the best airy cakes you may have had. Both the zest and juice of three oranges are involved, so it is wonderfully orange-y and citrus-y.
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time40 mins
Total Time1 hr
- 2/3 cup 150 grams butter, softened
- 1 1/4 cups 250 grams granulated sugar
- 4 large eggs separated, room temperature
- 3 large oranges room temperature
- 2 cups 9 oz/250 grams all purpose flour
- 1 tsp baking powder
- Confectioners' sugar for dusting (optional)
Preheat oven to 350ºF (180ºC). Grease an 8x8" baking dish or line with parchment paper.
Beat butter and sugar on medium speed of electric mixer until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add egg yolks, one at a time, beating well after each. With mixer on low speed, add the zest and juice from all three oranges. The mixture will appear curdled at first - that's ok. Increase mixer speed to medium and beat until it comes together, pausing to scrape down sides of bowl as needed.
In a separate bowl, whisk flour and baking powder. With mixer speed on low, gradually beat into the butter mixture until just incorporated.
In another bowl, whip egg whites until stiff peaks form. Fold 1/3 of the whites into the cake batter to lighten it up, then gently fold in the rest. (Use a light hand so you don't deflate the whites.) Scrape batter into prepared baking pan and bake for 35-45 minutes, until top feels springy when gently pressed and tester inserted in centre comes out clean or with just a few moist crumbs.