Orange Saffron Semolina Cake
THEME: #145 – CAKES
RECIPE: ORANGE SAFFRON SEMOLINA CAKE
Orange Saffron Semolina Cake is a soft, moist, aromatic, delectable dessert or tea time treat. Semolina gives this cake a very light and crumbly texture.
When Preethi who blogs at Preethi’s Cuisine suggested Cakes as the #145th theme, I jumped at the suggestion as for quite a while now I have not tried out a new cake recipe. I’ve been baking the usual eggless plain or chocolate cake whenever friends and family request. When the suggestion of cake came up, I’m sure no one in our group thought of the forthcoming big Royal Wedding.
The Big Royal Wedding
I baked the cake for the theme on Friday evening and added the final touch on Saturday morning, thinking to myself that ‘ok dessert is ready for tonight’. Around lunch time hubby comes home and asked me why I was not watching the wedding. I asked whose and he replied ‘why your distant relatives’ and I thought who is getting married in my family…. the weddings are next year! Then he clarifies ‘ Harry and Megan’. Now hubby dear loves to joke and since most or rather three quarter of my family is in UK anything related to the Royal Family is referred to as my ‘sangha’ meaning relatives in UK! He forgets that I’m Kenyan!
Anyway so we quickly settled down with our lunch in front of the telly to watch ‘the wedding of the year’. How did I miss Priyanka in that gorgeous grey suit? Anyway after a tasty delicious lunch of pasta with mushroom sauce, hubby asked what’s for dessert. “There’s a wedding so we must have some dessert,” he said. Just as well the cake was ready.
Well, I was able to boast on my cousin group that we too are celebrating the wedding and sent them a click of the cake I had prepared. Obviously is nothing much compared to the royal wedding cake which broke tradition as did the wedding too. Instead of a traditional tiered cake the cakes were displayed on golden thrones. Lemon sponge with elderflower syrup was the flavor with lemon curd too. Read more about the cake detail here.
Some Awesome Home Baked Cakes To Check Out:
Orange Saffron Semolina Cake
For a very long time I’d wanted to try out a traditional semolina cake. I had the recipe bookmarked for ages. When the theme was decided, I dug up the recipe. This recipe was jotted down ages ago. I added my own twist to the cake by adding saffron.
Last week I had baked an eggless version for my best friend’s 60th birthday. In both the cakes instead of adding sugar syrup on top, I decided to serve the cake with some whipped fresh cream. I’m glad I did that as it was a good balance of flavors with the cream.
Anyway, its after a long time hubby and I got to enjoy a cake with some fresh cream. I simply like the texture that semolina adds to the cake, light and crumbly. Below I’m sharing a picture of the cake I baked for my friend and please for heaven’s sake do not compare the photo with the above !!!! I know I’m bad at icing.
Coming back to today’s cake recipe, though I was not able to capture the yellow colour of the cake well because of the cloudy weather, rest assured the cake was very flavorful and smelt so good while it was baking.
My Mum’s Cake Server
As you scroll down, you’ll notice a cake server, also called a cake shovel in the click. I was given that by my aunt (kaki) when I went to Nairobi in March. She told me that it belonged to my mum and I should have it. I can’t remember my mum ever baking a cake. I guess she must have got this years ago as a present from one of my dad’s German business dealers and she must have kept it away safely.
Don’t Want to Top the Cake with Whipped Cream, here are other options:
- Replace whipped cream with greek yogurt.
- Simply drizzle the cake with some orange syrup.
How To Prepare the Orange Syrup
Take 100ml orange juice and ½ cup sugar. Mix both in a saucepan. Place the saucepan over low heat. Keep stirring till the sugar melts. Allow the mixture to simmer till it becomes half the quantity. Cool the syrup.
Poke the cooled down cake on top with a fork in a few places. Drizzle or brush half of the syrup over the top of the cake. Serve the remaining with the cake.
Ingredients Required For Orange Saffron Semolina Cake
Semolina -best to use fine semolina and not the coarse one.
Almond Powder – grind almonds with the skin. Can replace it with almond flour.
Butter – unsalted or salted. For the cake and greasing the pan.
Eggs – large
Sugar – caster sugar
Baking Powder – as the leavening agent
Saffron – soak in 1 tbsp hot water for 10-15 minutes for best colour
Fresh Orange Juice – best to use freshly squeezed orange juice. To add to the batter and also for soaking the cake
Orange Rind or Zest – for flavouring
Whipped Cream – optional, for topping
Chopped Pistachio – optional for topping
ORANGE SAFFRON SEMOLINA CAKE
For the cake:
- 1 cup fine semolina
- 1 cup ground almonds
- 2 eggs at room temperature
- 125 g butter at room temperature
- ½ cup sugar
- 1 tsp baking powder
- ¼ tsp salt
- 2 tbsp orange rind or zest
- ¼ cup fresh orange juice
- 1 tbsp hot water
- ¼ tsp saffron strands
- 3 tbsp orange juice for soaking
- extra butter for greasing
For the topping:
- 1 cup whipped fresh cream
- some chopped pistachios
- Soak saffron in hot water for 15 minutes.
- Preheat the oven to 180°C.
- Grease a loaf tin 9"X 5" with some butter. Dust it with some plain flour. Tap the extra flour out of the tin.
- Sieve semolina, almond powder, salt and baking powder into a bowl. Use a medium mesh sieve.
- Cream sugar and butter till it becomes light and fluffy.
- Add one egg and beat or mix till the egg is incorporated into the butter sugar mixture.
- Add the other egg and beat or mix till the egg is fully mixed into the mixture.
- Add the saffron water, orange juice and zest into the mixture. Mix well.
- Add the flour mixture and fold into the mixture.
- Pour the batter into the prepared tin.
- Bake the cake for 30-35 minutes or till a skewer or toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.
- Remove the cake from the oven. Using a pastry brush, dab some orange juice on top of the cake.
- Let the cake cool down completely in the pan.
- Remove from the pan.
- Spread the whipped fresh cream over the cake.
- Sprinkle with some chopped pistachios and serve.
- Serve with some extra fresh cream.
- Use fine semolina as coarse one will make the crumb the cake a bit hard.
- If you like to serve the cake with orange syrup instead of cream then boil 100ml fresh orange juice with ½ cup sugar for 5 minutes over low heat. Let it cool and drizzle over the cake.
- Can use a round or square cake tin.
- Replace the whipped cream with some Greek Yogurt.
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