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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Orange cake particularly memorable

By Wanda A. Adams
Advertiser Columnist

 •  Oats overflowing with benefits

My most embarrassing professional moment occurred about 20 years ago, when I was a food editor in Seattle. The national Association of Culinary Professionals was meeting in the city, and every big culinary name was in town. Including Julia Child.

That Wednesday, I left the flour out of a cake recipe.

The cake had won a rather well-publicized cooking competition, it was a very unusual cake and I'd done a rather extensive story on the woman whose recipe it was, so this drew a lot of reader interest. By the end of the day, I was answering the phone "Two cups of flour." And wishing I could swan dive into a vat of flour and disappear.

But I still love the cake, which is particularly moist with a sophisticated bitter-sweet flavor. Here it is. Flour included.

And, yes, you use the whole (seedless) orange, skin and all.


For the cake:

  • 1 cup raisins
  • 1 cup walnuts
  • 1 whole seedless navel orange, cut into chunks
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 cup buttermilk

    For the frosting:

  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 2 tablespoons butter, softened
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2-3 tablespoons sour cream
  • 2 tablespoons reserved nut-fruit mixture (see recipe)

    Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour (or spray with Baker's Joy) a 9-by-13-inch baking pan.

    Place raisins, nuts and whole orange in food processor and process briefly to chop (do not puree); reserve. Sift the flour, soda, baking powder and salt into a medium bowl; reserve.

    In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, cream together the butter and sugar. Beat in the eggs and vanilla. Alternately add dry ingredients and buttermilk in several additions, beating between each.

    Reserve 2 tablespoons of the nut-fruit mixture for frosting. Beat the rest into the batter. Turn into prepared pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 40-50 minutes.

    Frosting: In a medium bowl, cream butter and sugar together, then beat in vanilla and sour cream. Add reserved nut-fruit mixture. Spread on cooled cake.

    Makes 12 servings.

  • Per serving: 430 calories, 17 g fat, 7 g saturated fat, 65 mg cholesterol, 370 mg sodium, 68 g carbohydrate, 2 g dietary fiber, 49 g sugar, 6 g protein

    • • •

    Cookbook orders taken: Orders for my upcoming cookbook, "The Island Plate: 150 Years of Recipes and Food Lore from The Honolulu Advertiser," are being taken online and at our information desk (605 Kapi'olani, 8:30 a.m.-4:45 p.m. weekdays; 525-7620).

    Reach Wanda A. Adams at wadams@honoluluadvertiser.com.