Make it. Eat it. Love it.
I know. It has been a while since I have been in the blogosphere. I haven’t posted anything new in 2 months and haven’t caught up on my favorite blogs in even longer than that. I have a good excuse. Really good. Promise.
Before I get into it I wanted to thank all of you who sent such lovely words of condolences on the passing of my Grandmother back in January. It is so heartwarming to get such beautiful comments and messages from friends I have made through this amazing food blog community.
So where have I been the past 2 months? Well, I’m super excited to be finally able to share this news with you. There has been a lot going on in my little corner of the world. My husband and I are expecting our first little sous chef!! For those mommies out there you may already be understanding why for the past 2 months I haven’t posted a new recipe or visited any food blogs. Morning sickness completely took over my life! Anything to do with food was not happening and so this food blogger hung up her apron and sulked on the couch eating no more than chicken stock and saltines. I am happy to say that it has passed and as I enter my second trimester I am back in the kitchen cooking and baking away. And, lucky for you I have not had any weird pregnancy cravings (yet) and so what I am cooking up is still delicious to all (for now).
Luckily my appetite and hunger to cook came back right before the end of blood orange season. How sad it would have been to miss it! I stocked up on 2 kilos of blood oranges on a recent trip to Tel Aviv’s Carmel Market and they sat in my kitchen for a week before I decided what do make with them.
This cake is inspired by Janna Gur’s citrus semolina cake from her cookbook, The Book of New Israeli Food: A Culinary Journey. If you don’t have it already, I highly recommend making this book part of your collection. In my variation of Janna’s citrus semolina cake, I left out the coconut, ground almonds and simple syrup and in place used almond flour and blood orange syrup. The blood orange slices were not only beautiful adorning the top of this cake, they added just that bit of something special. The cake is’t overly sweet and the texture is more crumbly than a normal cake, but you can blame that on the semolina flour. Serve with some blood orange syrup on the side and you will be sure to impress any guest.
As I cracked the eggs, mixed the batter and popped it in the oven I couldn’t help but smile thinking that soon enough little hands will be pulling on my apron asking to lick the bowl. The thought is taking me over the moon with happiness and I find myself impatient wanting to meet my little one! But, for now I will just dream about those little fingers that will soon be grabbing mine and that tiny smile that will make my heart melt.
1 blood orange, sliced into thin rounds
1 tablespoon brown sugar
6 eggs, separated
2/3 cup sugar
1 cup sifted flour
3/4 cup almond flour
2 1/2 cups semolina
4 teaspoons baking powder
1 cup oil
1 1/2 cup freshly squeezed blood orange juice
1/2 cup orange marmalade
For Blood Orange Syrup:
2 cups sugar
1 cups blood orange juice
Preheat the oven to 350°F and grease a spring form pan.
Sprinkle brown sugar on the bottom of greased pan and place blood orange slices on top. Set aside.
Beat the egg whites and sugar in a mixing bowl using an electric mixer until they hold stiff peaks.
In a separate mixing bowl, combine all the dry ingredients; flour, semolina, almond flour and baking powder.
In a large mixing bowl, beat the egg yolks and gradually add the oil, blood orange juice and marmalade.
Slowly add the dry ingredients into the egg yolk mixture until combined.
Gently fold peaked egg whites into the batter.
Pour the batter over the brown sugar and orange slices.
Bake for 35 minutes or until the cake turns golden and a toothpick comes out dry.
While the cake is baking make the blood orange syrup by combining the blood orange juice and sugar in a sauce pan and bringing to a boil.
Simmer for 20 minutes or until reduced and syrup is thick.
Set syrup aside to cool slightly.
When cake is done, remove from oven and run a knife around the edge.
Pour 1/4 of the syrup on the cake.
Let cake cool for 10 minutes and carefully invert onto a platter.
Pour another 1/4 of the syrup over the orange slices.
Cool cake completely and serve with remaining blood orange syrup on the side.