Middle Eastern Orange Cake


2 large oranges (or 1 orange and 1 blood orange if you’d prefer)

5 cardamom pods

1 stick of cinnamon or cassia bark

6-ish cloves

2 star anise pods

6 free range eggs

1 tsp pure vanilla essence

250g raw sugar

250g total of tree nuts or meal such as almonds, hazelnuts, walnuts

1 heaped tsp baking powder

icing sugar, thick cream and orange segments to serve


1 medium saucepan

1 small bowl


24cm spring form cake tin

Baking paper

1 blender/thermomix

1 rubber spatula


  1. Place oranges in a saucepan and boil for 1½- 2 hours, drain and leave to cool.  This can be done well in advance.
  2. Preheat oven to 190C.  Grease and line the cake tin.
  3. Crack eggs into bowl and pour into blender with the vanilla.
  4. Open up oranges and remove most of the pips, then break up flesh and skin into smallish pieces and place into blender.
  5. Add sugar, then nuts/nut meal and baking powder.
  6. Place lid securely on the blender and blend until a smooth puree is formed. Use spatula to scrape down the sides of the blender (if you’re using a thermomix, blitz on sp. 8 for 8 secs)
  7. Pour batter into cake tin and place into oven for 1-1½ hours. Test for doneness by inserting a wooden skewer into the centre of the cake if it comes out clean it is done.
  8. Leave cake to cool in tin, then gently remove to a cake plate for decoation.
  9. Dust with icing sugar and serve with thick cream and orange segments

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© 2017 Alice Zaslavsky