Wednesday, July 17, 2019

Semolina Cake with Oranges

When I saw this semolina cake with oranges in Bon Appétit,I knew I wanted to make it. And then I remembered that I had lots of semolina left over from making this cake two summers ago, and it was still sitting in the pantry in my parents’ kitchen. It was still good, so I decided to make the orange semolina cake, and you guys… It was fantastic. Like, so good that my mother, who was initially thrilled that I was using up the semolina, pretty much decided that she’d have to buy it again to keep making this. We all loved it; the kids actually liked the fruit more than the cake, but hey, no complaints here!

For the syrup
2 bay leaves
⅓ cup sugar
1 pinch of kosher salt
½ cup water
2 tsp. fresh lemon juice

For the cake and assembly
¾ cup (1½ sticks) lactose-free butter, melted, slightly cooled
1½ cups coarse-grind semolina flour
1 cup sugar
2 tsp. baking powder
2 tsp. finely grated orange zest
1 tsp. ground cardamom
½ tsp. kosher salt
1 cup lactose-free plain whole-milk Greek yogurt
¾ cup lactose-free whole milk
3 oranges
lemon juice (optional)

For the syrup
Bring bay leaves, sugar, salt, and water to a simmer in a small saucepan, stirring occasionally to dissolve sugar, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in lemon juice. Pluck out bay leaves; let cool.

For the cake and assembly
Preheat oven to 350 °F. Grease a 9"-diameter cake pan.

Whisk semolina, sugar, baking powder, orange zest, cardamom, and salt in a medium bowl.
Whisk yogurt and milk in a large bowl. Mix in dry ingredients, then butter. Scrape batter into prepared pan. Bake cake until golden brown and firm, 55–65 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack and let cake cool in pan 10 minutes. Turn a plate over top of pan and invert cake. Using a cake tester or toothpick, poke holes all over cake; gradually pour all but ¼ cup bay leaf syrup over, letting it soak in. Let sit 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, remove peel and white pith from oranges. Slice into ¼"-thick rounds; remove seeds. Combine in a medium bowl with remaining bay leaf syrup; let sit, tossing occasionally, at least 20 minutes. Taste and add lemon juice as needed.

Serve cake with oranges in syrup.

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