I admit I was doubtful about combining orange, cardamom, a touch of Cointreau and sour cream together. However, I’m always looking for exotic and unique flavors and it is nice when those bring back memories of my life in the Middle East.
This cake is so moist and fluffy! The warm syrup is a perfect complement, with the orange and cardamom giving it a unique flavour. It was game night at my house and the cake was a big hit.
It was adapted from a recipe of Greg and Lucy Malouf who have written several books on the cuisines of the Maghreb, Middle East and the Mediterranean.
Once again I couldn’t find caster sugar so I used a very fine grain sugar. If you only have granulated sugar, you can easily make it into fine grain sugar by using a food processor with a metal blade for about one minute.
Orange Cardamom Sour Cream Cake
- 130 g/4 1/3 oz unsalted butter, softened
- 200 g/7 oz caster sugar or other fine grain sugar
- grated zest of one orange
- grated zest of one lemon
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 large eggs
- 225 g/7 1/2 oz all purpose flour
- 1 tsp cardamom seeds, grounded and sieved
- 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 200 ml/7 fl oz sour cream
- juice of one orange
- juice of 1/2 lemon
- 3 tbsp Cointreau
- 3 tbsp Caster or other fine grain sugar
- 6 cardamom pods, cracked
- 1 cinnamon stick
- Preheat the oven to 170ºC/325º F. Butter and line the bottom of a 23 cm/9 inch springform cake pan with parchment or wax paper.
- Cake batter: Start with the wet ingredients. Beat the butter and sugar together until pale and creamy. Add the zests of the orange and lemon and the vanilla extract. Add the eggs, beating one at a time until well combined. Prepare the dry ingredients. After sifting together the flour, cardamom, baking powder and salt, add it gradually to the wet batter, alternating with the sour cream. At low speed, you should mix it very well after each addition.
- Turn the batter into the springform and bake it for 50 – 60 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.
- While the cake is baking you should prepare the syrup. In a small saucepan mix gently all the ingredients at low heat until the sugar is dissolved. Then simmer for 2 to three minutes. Strain and dispose of the cardamom and cinnamon. If you don’t have or don’t want to use Cointreau, you can increase the amount of orange juice.
- As soon as you remove the cake out of the oven, using a skewer or a very thin knife pierce the top of the cake all over. Then, making sure it is evenly distributed, pour the syrup over the cake.
- Place the springform on a wire rack and leave it to cool completely before you release the cake.
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