Sunday, 14 October 2012

Orange sponge with curd filling

I love a fair, I truly do!  This weekend Mr CC and I visited a fair with many craft and cottage industry type stalls; one of my favourite stalls was run by a Hertfordshire bee keeper selling their honey.  They even bought along some bees for us to meet!  They also made honey curds.  Yes – honey curd!  Chatting to the lady who made the curd, she explained it was a classic curd recipe but she simply replaced the sugar with honey.  Here’s my classic curd recipe  I shall be adapting to make honey curd in the future.   Yes, there is some curd missing from the pot in the photo – Mr CC snaffled some to have on bread before I used it all up for this cake!

I purchased a pot of honey and lime curd and – oh my – it was heaven!  The first hit was thick, rich honey and then the lime cut in with a light sharpness.  I instantly ditched the recipe I was going to bake this week and picked an orange sponge which I suspected would work with the curd perfectly.

The orange sponge gets its intense flavour purely from orange zest.  I know!  Me using the hated peel!  But I did, for I have made a discovery.  I don’t mind zest if it’s so fine it has no texture in the baked sponge.  Step forward Lakeland with their awesome ceramic grater for zest.  Seriously – look at how fine it grates!  It’s finer than strands of saffron:

Now, it must seem like I bang on about Lakeland a lot – truth be told, if they set up a cult I’d probably be an early follower!  I sometimes think it would just be cheaper to do a Victor Kiam and buy the company (now there’s a reference for all of you who enjoyed TV adverts in the 80s!).  But, I must stress that I bought it (the grater, not Lakeland) – it’s not a product plug and I don’t have an advertising deal with them! 

Tempting though it was to make buttercream and beat the curd into it, I decided to keep it very pure and use the curd on its own.  The curd had a pleasingly citrus edge to it and I didn’t want to dilute that and lose its punch.  I topped the cake with an orange glace icing which added good flavour and texture.

For a cake designed and created on the hoof, I’m rather proud of this one – it’s fresh, zingy, light and beautiful.  I’m looking out the window and seeing grey skies and Autumn; I’m looking at my plate and seeing sunshine and Summer.  What more could one ask for? 


For the sponge:
225g unsalted butter, at room temperature
225g golden caster sugar
4 eggs
225g self raising flour
Finely grated zest of 1 orange

For the glace:
100g icing sugar
1-2 tablespoon fresh orange juice

For the curd filling:
I bought the curd for the filling.  Next time I will make the honey curd adapting my trusted curd recipe by swapping the sugar for honey.


Preheat the oven to 180°C/fan oven 160°C/350°F/gas mark 4.

Line two 20cm loose bottomed sandwich tins with baking paper.

Start with the sponges: beat together the butter and sugar until paler and fluffier.  Because of the ratios, you won’t get a very whipped mix but you will notice it turn paler.

Beat in the eggs, one at a time, adding a little of the flour should the mixture start to curdle.

Fold in the remaining flour and grated zest.

Spoon evenly into the prepared tins and level the surface.

Bake for approximately 25-30 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the cakes comes out clean.  Mine took 30 minutes.  Don’t panic as the cakes don’t turn particularly golden.

Leave to cool on a wire rack, removing the sponges from the tins when they are cool enough to safely handle.

When you wish to build the cake, cut each sponge through horizontally so you end up with four layers.

Place a layer on the plate you will be serving the cake.

Spread 2 tablespoons of curd over the sponge and place a disc of sponge on top.

Repeat until you put the top disc of sponge in place.

Now make the glace: place the icing sugar in a bowl and beat in one tablespoon of fresh orange juice.

Add more orange juice if required – I needed an extra ½ tablespoon.  Don’t add too much – if it’s too runny it won’t set on top of the cake.

Spoon onto the centre of the cake and let it spread out at its own pace.  It’s nice if a little runs down the side.

Serve in thick slices with a mug of tea!

Bask in the glory of the wonderful thing you have created.



Susie @ Fold in the Flour said...

OMG, CC, this looks incredible! You've done a fantastic job and it looks lush. I don't tend to like big bits of zest in bakes, either, so this does look perfect (I use a micro plane on mine) and definitely no lumps! Can I try some, pretty please? ;)

Caroline said...

That seriously looks like perfection to me. What a great use of a great product. I wonder why I've never seen a honey curd before, it sounds utterly delicious!

I sometimes feel like I'm constantly plugging Lakeland, and like you, it's all my own money that I've spent there. I think perhaps we should go into partnership and offer to buy them out.... (goes out to buy lottery ticket....)

Cakeyboi said...

Honey lime curd - oh my! Disneyboi would love that and me too! Cake looks lovely CC x

Jo said...

Look at the icing dripping down the sides, it looks so inviting. I love how fresh and zingy this cakes sounds. The perfect antidote to miserable, grey weather.

Lisa Shannon said...

Hehe!! victor Kiam what a blast from the past but seriously CC, you could do much worse that buy Lakeland, I spend (waste) far too much time and money in there. This cake looks yum and I love that clinging onto summer feeling it radiates x

Kate@whatkatebaked said...

Honey curd? There's a new one on me- but one I'll definitely keep an eye out for, it sounds absolutely lush! I too am a great lover of all things Lakeland- each time one of their new catalogues drops through the letterbox, any planned activity is pushed aside for a cuppa and a good nose through all the brilliant products!

Gloria said...

For me this is heavenly and delicious I love all with lemon curd or lima curd or oranges and sounds perfect!!:)

Miss C Flash said...

Honey and lime curd - what a delicious combination. Your cake looks really scrumptious and perfect with a cup of tea.

Choclette said...

Oh sunshine and summer please. Your sponges always look spectacular and I love the colour of this one. I also love the idea of honey curd and will not have to make some.

Cakelaw said...

This cake looks so fluffy - and I do love citrus curd. Mmmmm, mmmm.

Greedy Traveller said...

That looks amazing again. I love honey but have never heard of honey curd - its always good to learn something new! The cake looks very light - definitely one to try out.

Katie said...

Wow that curd sounds gorgeous. Never heard of honey curd before, let along honey and lime. Lovely combination and your cake loooks delicious

Maria♥ said...

Wow that is one gorgeous fluffy cake, would love a slice right now :)


Ulla said...

I hope you share honey lemon/lime curd recipe after you´ve tried that.

Baking Addict said...

The honey lime curd sounds amazing!! The cake looks great too especially with the icing dripping down the side. I'm a huge Lakeland fan too - I should probably buy shares in that company as I seem to spend so much each time I shop there!

Mrs Mulford said...

I've only just caught up with your posts and wow I've parked my plate here please. Not heard of honey curd either, lovely. I'm so impressed by you tea cakes too. Don't think I could have made them with time constraints either. Fab posts thanks for sharing :-)

cake lover said...

That curd sounds like a delicious discovery. You may not have a deal with Lakeland, but maybe you should! Has their comms team seen your blog?!

Anonymous said...

thanks for sharing.

morri said...

Finally got around to writing the review for this cake! I don't own two 8-inch sandwich tins, so I used a 10-inch one. After baking the sponge I sliced it horizontally, then vertically, then I put the halves on top of one another (clever, right?). It felt a bit silly - doing so much work and getting just half a cake out of it? I contemplated just slicing the cake once and putting one layer of curd between the slices, but... the multi-layerness seemed one of the best thing about this recipe. After the assembly he cake looked like something that afternoon teas had been invented for - golden, crumbly and dripping with icing. I absolutely loved the tangy, citrus-y bite in each ingredient, and the sponge was melt-in-your mouth delicious. And oh - I used homemade curd from the lemon cupcakes recipe, swapping sugar for honey, just as suggested. Major thumbs up.