I bought a new pan– a mini-bundt pan, and I love it. I’ve recently found myself coming up with excuses to bake more, just so I can see those tiny, adorable cakes. As my husband has mentioned (after listening to me justify making another little bundt-shaped treat) , the line between a hobby and mental illness can be a thin one. Who cares when the results are fabulous? I love these orange and vanilla-scented bundt cakes. They’re incredibly flavorful, and just small enough to justify eating more than one.
For this recipe, do not cheat and use anything other than freshly-squeezed orange juice. Trust me, you won’t get the concentrated flavor that these cakes can deserve from a bottle or from a frozen can. I love it when a cake recipe delivers a potent, layered, flavor. Here, the orange zest in the cake batter is the first wonderful layer. Next, there’s the glaze with its freshly-squeezed orange juice that also moistens the cake. Finally, there’s the fantastic icing. These three layers really combine for a powerful citrus punch. Here’s the thing though, the cake flavors aren’t limited solely to orange citrus. This cake also offers strong vanilla notes. If you’ve baked with vanilla beans before, you know that they are not subtle. They give you big flavor. Together, the vanilla and orange citrus pair beautifully in this cake–or cakes, if you want to break out the mini-bundt pan.
The Recipe: Orange and Vanilla Scented Bundt Cake
( Makes 1 bundt cake or 26 mini-bundt cakes)
3 cups unbleached all purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 2/3 cups sugar
1 tablespoon finely grated orange peel
1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise (2 teaspoons vanilla can be substituted, if in a pinch)
3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
3 large eggs
2/3 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
2/3 cup buttermilk (To make your own buttermilk — 2/3 cup regular milk with 2 teaspoons white vinegar mixed in. Let sit for 10 minutes).
1/2 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
2 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons (1/4 stick) unsalted butter
2/3 cup powdered sugar
4 teaspoons (roughly) freshly squeezed orange juice
For the Cake:
Position rack in center of oven and preheat to 350° F. Butter and flour 12-15 cup Bundt pan. Whisk flour, salt, and baking soda in medium bowl to blend. Using electric mixer, beat sugar and orange peel in large bowl at low speed to release essential oils from peel. Scrape seeds from vanilla bean into sugar mixture and beat to blend well. Add butter and beat until light. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Mix in orange juice (mixture will look curdled). Stir in flour mixture, then buttermilk. Transfer batter to prepared pan; smooth top. Bake cake until tester inserted near center comes out clean, about 50 minutes. (Note: if using mini bundt pans — fill them 3/4 full and bake between 12-15 minutes. A toothpick inserted should come out clean.)
For the Glaze:
Meanwhile, boil orange juice, sugar, and butter in heavy small saucepan over medium heat until reduced to 1/2 cup, swirling pan occasionally, about 5 minutes.
Cool cake in pan for 10 minutes ( less for mini-bundts). Using small sharp knife, cut around the sides and center tube of pan to loosen cake. Turn cake out onto rack and brush with glaze. Cool completely.
For the icing:
Place sugar in small bowl. Mix in orange juice, 1 teaspoon at a time, until thick pourable consistency forms. Drizzle icing over cake. Let stand until icing sets. (Note: I felt there wasn’t enough icing to top all of the mini-bundts, so I double the icing ingredients. The recipe already reflects the change). Enjoy with a relaxing cup of coffee or tea.
Source: Bon Appetit Desserts
I hope you all enjoy this cake as much as we did! Have a great day and see you soon!