Blood Orange Loaf Cake

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As you will have seen from my last post I couldn’t help but pick up a few blood oranges while I was at Borough Market the other week and as they’re in prime season right now I thought I’d share with you all my version of the classic lemon loaf but with a blood orange twist.

It’s super simple and easy so let’s get started!

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You will need:

  • A standard loaf tin
  • 220g self-raising flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • A pinch of salt
  • 115g unsalted butter (preferably at room temperature)
  • 200g caster sugar
  • Grated zest of 2 blood oranges
  • 2 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 120ml buttermilk
  • 60ml (about 2/3 oranges worth) fresh blood orange juice

For the Icing:

  • 3 tablespoons (45ml) fresh blood orange juice
  • 1/2 cup (60g) icing sugar
  • Extra sugar for caramelising the orange slices.

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Instructions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C/ 160°C for fan ovens. Grease or line your loaf tin.
  2. Whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt until everything’s mixed well.
  3. In a seperate bowl beat together the butter, sugar and blood orange zest until light and fluffy. Whisk in the eggs, one at a time until well mixed.
  4. Add about a 1/3 of the flour mixture and mix until just combined. Add the buttermilk and blood orange juice and mix then fold in the remaining flour.
  5. Pour the mixture into the loaf tray then bake for about 1 hour or until golden and a toothpick comes out clean when inserted into the center. I found an hour of cooking then covering the top with foil and cooking for another half hour was perfect. Once removed let the cake cool until chill to the touch.
  6. Remove it from the tin and stab with toothpick or skewer repeatedly all over the cake.
  7. While the cake is cooling, whisk together the blood orange juice and icing sugar until smooth. Pour over the holes in the cake until it has absorbed it all.
  8. Then heat the sugar in the pan, between 50g-100g depending on how many slices you want to caramelise and add an equal amount of water. Stir until the sugar is dissolved then don’t touch it until it turns golden. Slice an orange thinly then lay the slices in the pan, turning once thoroughly coated. Place them on a drying rack and leave for 10-15 minutes until completely cool then place on top of the cake.

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Then enjoy! Whether you serve it cold or still slightly warm it’s perfect with a cup of tea or whip up some cream with some leftover zest for an indulgent yet refreshing pudding. Not to mention you can swap it for what ever citrus fruit takes your fancy from lime to lemon to grapefruit!

DSC06265DSC06279I hope you give this recipe a go as it’s perfect for even the most novice of bakers and a certified big hit if my family’s anything to go by, as it didn’t even last the night! If you do make it I’d love to know your reaction or see any pictures, and as always please let me know what you’re baking this month as I’m always on the lookout for something new to try!DSC06281

 

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Christmas Bits ‘n Pieces

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Little known fact, Christmas is my FAVOURITE time of year. Seriously from my birthday to Halloween to Fireworks nights, I feel every holiday is a mini celebration before the big mumma, Christmas. This means more often than not I get a little bit more spendy than usual at this time of year, so I thought I’d share with you guys some of the bits and pieces I’ve recently picked up in case you’re in need of some inspiration. Not to mention the best bit is the most expensive item on the list will still only cost you £6!

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Silver Glitter Gift Tags-Paperchase-£1.25

Chocolate Coins-Wilkinsons-£0.50

Winter House Tea Light Holder-Wilkinsons-£3

Snowflake Fairy Lights-Primark-£6

Metal Star Decoration-Wilkinsons-£1.50

Santa Claus Letter Decoration-Wilkinsons-£1

Christmas Ribbon Selection-Paperchase-£1.75

Penguin Felt Christmas Decoration-Wilkinsons-£1.50

Golden Glitter Pine Cones-Primark-£2

Tis the Season To Be Jolly-Wilkinsons-£1

Minature Glass Bauble Set-Wilkinsons-£2.50

Velvet Wrap Ribbon-Tiger-£1

Merry Christmas Decoration-Wilkinsons-£1.50

Gingerbread man present topper-Paperchase-£1.50

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I hope this post has given you a little bit of inspiration on how to get some cute Christmas bits on a budget and has got you into the festive spirit. I know it’s a cliché but I really do love Christmas, so expect more festive posts on their way soon! In the mean time I’d love to know where your favourite place to shop for Christmas bits is as I’m always on the lookout for more!

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Scent of Summer

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So right now the UK is recuperating from it’s first official “heatwave” of the summer, so I know a candle might not be at the top of everyone’s must have list, but this one is just so gorgeous I had to mention it.

The Silk Blossom scent comes in a candle which I purchased for £42, and a cologne which comes in at the slightly steeper £82. Very pricey yes but all the proceeds of the candle go to the Jo Malone charity which builds gardens in underprivileged areas, so it’s pretty much the most feel-good purchase you’ll nab this year!

Described as “Nature’s blooms at their most tempting. The nectarous, pink-fringed pompoms of Silk Blossom. Irresistible to hummingbirds and butterflies. Apricot-fresh with a touch of spice. Airy with clouds of powder-soft heliotrope, nestling on a bed of moss. Fruity and enticing.” It’s the epitome of a fresh and summery scent which works equally as great as a room or personal scent. Not to mention the gorgeous ombre design of the products make them almost impossible to resist!

The candles are pretty much sold out everywhere although I would have to recommend to beg, borrow or steal to get one, as its versatility and mix of complex scents makes it a perfect scent for a modern woman looking for a hint of sophistication in Summer. I know I’ll definitely be counting the pennies until I can afford the cologne as well!

Gemma

xx