Blood Orange Olive Oil Cake

Blood Orange Olive Oil Cake

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Serves 6-10

Butter for greasing pan
6 large blood oranges
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup buttermilk
3 eggs
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
2/3 cup blood orange/mandarin orange/regular extra virgin olive oil
Agave nectar
Heavy cream

Note: Can be made up to two days before serving, though the crust is much crisper if eaten the day of.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9-by-5-inch loaf pan.

Grate the zest from two oranges and place in a bowl with the sugar. Using your fingers, rub ingredients together until orange zest is evenly distributed with sugar.

Cut off the top and bottom ends of a blood orange. Stand it on one flat side. Starting at the top of the fruit, cut off all the peel and white pith, following the outer curve. Cut in a downward motion between membranes and release the segments. Cut the segment in half-inch pieces and place them in a bowl. Squeeze any juice from the leftover orange into another bowl. Repeat with the other five oranges. (This can be made one day ahead. Cover juice and segments separately and chill.)

Why they're called "blood" oranges!

Why they’re called blood oranges!

Pour 1/4 cup of the blood orange juice into a large mixing bowl. Add a little less than a 1/2 cup of the buttermilk. Add the sugar-zest mixture to the bowl and whisk well. Whisk in eggs.

In another bowl, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Whisk dry ingredients into wet ones in three intervals. Gently whisk in olive oil a little at a time until blended. Fold in half of the orange segments, setting aside the other half of the segments for later. Scrape batter into pan and smooth top.

Bake cake for about 55 minutes, or until golden and a knife inserted into the center comes out clean. Cool on a rack for 5 minutes, then unmold and cool to room temperature right-side up.

In the meantime, prepare the sauce. Add a few tablespoons of agave nectar to the reserved orange segments and stir to combine. Whip the chilled cream until it is stiff.

Serve a slice of the cake with a dollop of whipped cream and drizzled with blood orange-agave sauce. Eat leftover cake with coffee in the morning!

Cook’s notes:

  • Agave nectar can be substituted with honey.
  • Regular oranges can be substituted for blood oranges.
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