orange poppy seed cake

July 30, 2017
orange poppy seed cake

Orange poppy seed cake is an all-time favourite. The addition of orange syrup when the cake is straight out of the oven, means this cake is going to be super moist and full of orange flavour. This cake is equally delicious served warm,  with a dollop of thickened cream, or a day or two later, on its own with a cup of tea. But there is a down side. The poppy seeds have a tendency to get caught in your teeth. So check in the mirror before heading out.

I know this is an all-time favourite recipe because the page in the AWW Masterclass: How to bake the perfect cake (ACP Books) book is splattered with orange juice and even specks of orange rind. Admittedly that could be a result of a sloppy cook (really should have wiped the page whilst the orange juice and zest was wet); or because the book was just too close to the juicer and zester; or because we just love to make/ eat it. It’s really a combination of the three, but this is a cake that has earned its way into the family recipe collection.

One thing to note when making this cake: it uses plain and self-raising flour, and almond meal. So when you’re adding the flour don’t stop at one. It’s been known to happen, when the mixture doesn’t look quite right, for the maker to exclaim: “but I added the flour!” Mmmmm….both? Not mentioning any names, but this anecdote serves as a reminder that all ingredients must be accounted for or it just won’t work! And the other thing: pour the syrup over the top of the cake, not the bottom.

I hope you love this cake as much as we do. Enjoy!



orange poppy seed cake

Pour warm syrup over the top of the cake.

orange poppy seed cake

orange poppy seed cake


orange poppy seed cake
Serves: 10-12 slices
  • ⅓ cup (50 grams) poppy seeds
  • ¼ cup (60 mls) milk
  • 185 grams butter, softened
  • 1 tablespoon finely grated orange rind
  • 220 grams (1 cup) caster sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 225 grams self-raising flour
  • 75 grams plain flour
  • 60 grams ground almonds (almond meal)
  • 125 ml (1/2 cup) orange juice
Orange Syrup
  • 220 grams (1 cup) caster sugar
  • 160 ml (2/3 cup) orange juice
  • 80 ml (1/3 cup) water
  1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius. Grease and line with baking paper a 22cm round springform cake tin.
  2. Combine seeds and milk in a small bowl and stand for 20 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, beat butter, orange rind and sugar in a bowl with electric beaters until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs one at a time until just combined between additions.
  4. Stir in sifted flours, ground almonds, juice and poppy seed mixture. Spread mixture into prepared cake tin and bake for about 1 hour or until a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean.
  5. Leave cake in tin for 5 minutes. Remove from tin and place on a wire rack, top side up. Place the wire rack over a tray, then pour the hot syrup over the hot cake. Return the hot syrup that drips into the tray to jug, and pour over cake again.
Orange syrup
  1. Place all ingredients in a small saucepan and heat, without boiling, until the sugar dissolves. Bring to the boil; simmer uncovered, without stirring, for 2 minutes. Pour syrup into a heatproof jug.
  2. Serve with thickened cream or on its own.




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