My love affair with blood oranges began when i was 9 in Belgium. I was visiting my aunt and I pulled what I thought was an orange out of her fruit basket. To my surprise, there wasn't the typical sunny interior but a deep red color with a taste that was a mixture of orange and berry. Years later, I remember the first bites and always look for them in the winter when they're in season.
I tried to stay a little healthy with this dish, which is why I chose to adapt Ina Garten's Lemon Yogurt Cake. Greek yogurt acts as the fat along with vegetable oil. Blood orange and lemon zest scent the whole cake with a blood orange juice simple syrup soaked into the cake. A simple glaze punched up with blood orange sorbet (told you I was obsessed) and/or berries macerated in lemon and pomegranate juice are a great accompaniment.
Blood Orange Yogurt Cake
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1 cup plain Greek yogurt
1 cup sugar
3 large eggs
zest of 2 blood oranges and 1 lemon
1/2 cup of vegetable oil
Sift the flour, baking powder, and salt into a bowl. I just used a whisk to break up any lumps, but I'm lazy. My whisk is also the whisk attachment to a hand mixer. Told you I don't bake. Mix the yogurt, sugar, eggs, and zest in a separate bowl. Combine the dry ingredients into the wet in three batches, folding gently.
Fold the vegetable oil into the batter gently. Pour into a buttered and floured loaf pan. Bake at 350 F for about 50 minutes.
Let cool for ten minutes in the pan before adding the cake soak . . .
Soak for Cake:
1/3 cup sugar
1/3 cup blood orange juice
Combine the sugar and blood orange juice in a small saucepan and heat until dissolved. Pour the soak slowly over the cake to add moisture and flavor.
1 cup powdered sugar
1 tbsp blood orange juice
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 tbsp blood orange sorbet (or other citrus sorbet)
pinch of salt
Combine the powdered sugar, juices, and sorbet. The sorbet is optional, I found it masked the slightly stale flavor of powdered sugar. Pour over the cooled cake. (Do this on a cooling rack over a baking sheet to avoid messes.)
1 pint strawberries, sliced thin
1 pint raspberries
juice of 1/2 a lemon
splash of pomegranate juice
1 tbsp of sugar
Combine the fruit, juices, and sugar and let sit for one hour before spooning over the cake.
Happy Valentine's Day!