This easy peasy to make orange and poppyseed cake is gluten-free is tastes delicious.
Up until know, I struggled with a lot of gluten-free baking recipes. They either ended up being very flat and not rising, or tasting horrible and dry.
What’s that saying again? ‘practice makes perfect’, yes that’s the one. There’s a reason this saying came about. After about a year of trying to master the art of gluten-free baking, I have finally done it. Of course, finding the right recipe to help aid me on my journey helped as well.
For any veteran bakers out there, whether you’re gluten-free or not, this may seem irrelevant to your Masterchef like skills in the kitchen. However, for someone like me, who although enjoys spending some time in the kitchen creating, but rarely has the time to do so. When it was about baking, I rarely succeeded in my endeavours to do so.
Give me some Asian, Mexican or Italian recipes and I will cook you a fine meal, but hand me a dessert recipe to make, and I rarely did.
So to achieve a recipe that finally worked. Well, let’s just say I was feeling pretty chuffed about the whole experience. Especially seeing everyone’s smiling faces whilst enjoying it.
Okay, so let’s be clear. I am still no master baker. But achieving this one recipe, has certainly boosted my confidence in my understanding of gluten-free baking and how it works.
For anyone who is new to gluten-free baking, and like me, doesn’t much understand a lot of it, there is a lot to take in in knowing how to make a cake rise using heavy components like corn flour or tapioca flour, coconut flour or buckwheat flour. Oh, and let’s not forget about almond meal. For this recipe I used a standard gluten-free self-raising flour. As I said, I am no master baker, so haven’t yet mastered the art of using more organic flours as standard flour replacements.
Okay okay, I can hear all your master gluten-free bakers ripping in to me for still using refined flour. Essentially replacing one bad flour for another one. But listen, baby steps okay. I need to start here and then slowly expanse into using other more organic and better for you flours.
In the meantime, standard gluten-free flour is the best option.
After searching online for a gluten-free orange and poppyseed cake recipe, and one that I could understand and didn’t count for me spending too much time in the kitchen trying to create the perfect one. I discovered a recipe on Best Recipes, which is an Australian website full of easy to make and super delicious recipes from sweet to savoury.
The prep is an easy 15 minutes and the cooking time is anywhere from 35 to 45 – so super fast, super easy. However, the recipe wasn’t exactly gluten-free, so I had to alter it. And this is where the real test was.
What I’ve learned from my baking experiences, is gluten-free flour, or any flour replacement, is that’s it’s very dense and heavy. So, you need some sort of agent to help release the element of the flour (not sure if that’s the scientific term for it, that’s just my interpretation of it) to help raise the cake and release all that denseness. again, not sure if that’s even a word LOL.
Baking Powder is your miracle cure to all of your gluten-free baking problems. By adding this into the recipe, I managed to convert a humble recipe which was not gluten-free, into a deliciously and fluffy cake.
Here’s what you’ll need:
- Food processor
- Cake tin (approximately 18 inches)
- 1 whole orange cut roughly (skin on and no seeds)
- 185g of butter (you can use a non-dairy alternative – I used Olive Butter)
- 3 eggs (I haven’t yet mastered the art of using egg free ingredients – next time)
- 1 cup of caster sugar
- 1 1/2 cups of gluten-free self-raising flour
- 1 tablespoon of baking powder
- 2 teaspoons of poppyseeds
As mentioned, with the gluten-free flour being dense and often resulting in a sinking cake which is both heavy and un-fluffy, even when you use self-raising flour, the baking powder is essential in helping make the cake rise and be fluffy, but breaking up all that heaviness in the flour.
Now for the fun part, putting it all together and baking it – yummy! And all you need is your trust food processor.
- Preheat the oven to 170 degrees
- Grease and line an 18cm cake tin (I used one where the sides are removable, as these are great in not ripping the side of your cake off when you’re trying to remove it after baking.
- Puree your entire orange in the food processor – yes skin and all.
- You may need to remove any parts that the processor struggled to chop up and manually do this.
- Melt the butter (anyway you like) and add into the processor, along with the eggs and sugar and mix well.
- Add the flour and baking powder, along with the poppyseeds and continue mixing, until you have a nice texture (batter).
- Pour into your cake tin and bake for 45 minutes.
- I bake mine for 35 minutes and then check it. If it’s still a little wet in the middle, I then continue with the remainder 10 minutes and then remove.
- Take it out of the oven and let it sit for at least 10 to 15 minutes, before dusting with icing sugar on the top and serving whilst still warm – delicious.
TIP: I also tried this recipe swapping the orange for 2 lemons (skin and all) and ditching the poppyseeds to create a very yummy and very lemony cake for my sister in law’s birthday and it was a real winner.
Ideally this recipe can be used for most cake recipes, replacing the fruit for whatever type of fruit you wish. I had some blood oranges I want to try next for this recipe – yum. I figure it will turn out exactly like the orange and poppyseed version, except the colour I am hoping will be more pinky orange than orange. I’ll be sue to update you on socials when that cake is made, so you can see the result.