Orange Blossom Cake
For a three-layer 8-inch cake:
1-1/4 cups (150 g) cake flour, sifted before measuring
1 cup (200 g) sugar
1 T. baking powder
3/8 tsp. salt
4 egg yolks (72 g)
1/2 cup (110 g) sunflower oil or other light oil
1/3 cup (89 ml) cold water
Zest of two lemons, finely minced
1/4 cup (59 ml) freshly squeezed lemon juice
3 T (44 ml) orange-flower water
1 tsp. orange extract
6 egg whites (180 g)
1/4 cup (48 g) sugar (for egg whites)
1/8 tsp. cream of tartar
2 cups (240 g) firm fresh raspberries
Prepare the Lemon Curd and the Vanilla Buttercream.
Preheat oven to 375 F.
Grease three 8-inch cake pans and dust with flour.
Sift the flour, the 200 g sugar, baking powder and salt and set aside.
In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the egg yolks, oil, water, lemon zest, lemon juice, orange-flower water and orange extract. Set aside.
With an electric mixer, whip the egg whites on medium speed until frothy, about one minute. Slowly add the cream of tartar and the remaining 1/4 cup of sugar while continuing to whip. Turn the mixer to high and whip until the whites form stiff peaks. Set aside.
Gradually sift the sifted dry ingredients over the wet ingredients while folding continuously. When all of the dry ingredients have been incorporated, gently fold the egg whites into the batter.
Divide the batter equally among the three cake pans. Bake at 375°F. for five minutes. Turn the oven down to 350°F and bake for approximately 15 minutes longer, or until the center of the cake springs back when you touch it. Let cool in the pans for five minutes and then invert onto cooling racks.
To Assemble the Cake:
Spread a thin layer of Vanilla Buttercream on the bottom layer. On top of that, spread a thin layer of the Lemon Curd and then a layer of fresh raspberries. Place the second layer on top of the bottom layer and repeat the process. Place the third layer on top. Ice the top and sides of the cake with the remaining buttercream and chill for about 30 minutes to set.
Garnish with edible flowers or fresh raspberries.
Recipe by Judith Weinstock