Bitter orange & poppy seed cake

Bitter orange & poppy seed cake

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(21 ratings)

Prep: 15 mins Cook: 1 hr


Cuts into 8 slices
This easy all-in-one cake is made with yogurt for a light texture.

Nutrition and extra info

  • Without sticky topping

Nutrition: per serving

  • kcal422
  • fat21g
  • saturates12g
  • carbs54g
  • sugars35g
  • fibre1g
  • protein6g
  • salt0.8g
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  • 3 tbsp good-quality thick marmalade (we used Frank Cooper's Thick Cut Oxford marmalade)
  • 150g pot natural bio yogurt



    Yogurt is made by adding a number of types of harmless bacteria to milk, causing it to ferment.…

  • 3 eggs



    The ultimate convenience food, eggs are powerhouses of nutrition, packed with protein and a…

  • 175g golden caster sugar
  • 200g self-raising flour
  • ½ tsp baking powder
    Baking powder

    Baking powder

    bay-king pow-dah

    Baking powder is a raising agent that is commonly used in cake-making. It is made from an alkali…

  • 175g butter, softened



    Butter is made when lactic-acid producing bacteria are added to cream and churned to make an…

  • zest 1 orange



    One of the best-known citrus fruits, oranges aren't necessarily orange - some varieties are…

  • 2 tsp poppy seed, toasted

For the sticky topping

  • juice ½ orange



    One of the best-known citrus fruits, oranges aren't necessarily orange - some varieties are…

  • 5 tbsp marmalade


  1. Heat oven to 160C/fan 140C/gas 3. Butter a deep, medium-sized loaf tin (about 20 x 10cm, measured from the top), then line the base with a rectangle of non-stick baking paper. Put the marmalade into a small pan, heat gently until melted (or use a microwaveproof jug or bowl, then cook on High for 30 secs). Beat in the yogurt, then let cool for a few mins.

  2. Put the remaining cake ingredients into a large bowl and beat with an electric hand whisk until smooth. Quickly beat in the yogurt and marmalade mix, then pour into the prepared tin. It will be quite runny. Leave the mix mounded in the middle of the tin rather than levelling the top, to help it rise and crack in the middle.

  3. Bake for 1 hr-1 hr 10 mins until golden and well-risen; a skewer should come out clean. Take a look at the cake after 45 mins; if it has taken on a lot of colour, loosely cover with baking paper. Meanwhile, heat the orange juice and marmalade in a small pan over a gentle heat until the marmalade melts (or use the microwave as before). Set aside to cool, stirring now and again, until you have a thick, but still runny, glaze. When the cake is ready, cool in the tin for 10 mins, then turn onto a rack. Spoon the topping over the cake while it’s just warm. The cake is best served the day it’s made, but will keep for up to 3 days tightly wrapped in an airtight container. Will freeze for up to 1 month, un-glazed.

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Comments, questions and tips

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7th May, 2011
I had problems cooking this cake. The middle didn't cook well so it needed much longer in the oven. Maybe it's my oven that's at fault?
6th May, 2011
What a moist, tangy, unusual cake... shame it fell apart when I tipped it out the tin! It was done all the way through, so maybe I just banged it too hard? Didn't mix it long enough? No idea, and as said it tastes delicious but it's sad and broken appearance is drawing ridicule from my friends!
24th Apr, 2011
This cake is YUMMY. I've made it as a loaf and as muffins (by reducing oven temp and cooking time). Everyone LOVES it and I've found adding even more marmalade makes it really moist. THANKS GOOD FOOD
11th Dec, 2010
really lovely cake, I made it last night - thanks :o)
31st Aug, 2010
I don't know what I did wrong but the cake sank. I followed the receipe, the only difference was that I used wooden spoon to mix instead of electric whisk. I tested with the skewer and it came off clean but when I tried to turn the cake out, it just crumbled to bits. Really disappointed.
8th May, 2010
Re the comments about the fan disasters, Raymond Blanc mentioned recently that using the fan assisted option is too fierce for cakes, conventional is the best way to bake. I have not had a disaster since I stopped trying to use the fan. I hope this helps!
22nd Apr, 2010
Gorgeous cake!
11th Oct, 2009
Fantastic easy recipe. Made this as a round cake for a dinner party. Subsituting the poppy seeds for walnuts and served it with an orange mascarpone cream and orange segments - went down a treat.
20th May, 2009
Have made this cake several times with home made marmalade. Friends all loved it at coffee mornings. The tangy marmalade makes it a good eat for the mornings. Friends took remainder home.
21st Mar, 2009
No, Mad'un, you're not the only one. I took the recipe down from a friend's magazine and didn't put the other oven temp only the fan one. I bet everyone else either converted properly or didn't use a fan oven - the fan temperature is wrong - Gas 3 is at least 150 not 140. What a waste of effort and ingredients, mine was just as you describe.


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