Tuesday 1 April 2014

Every Good Tree Bears Good Fruit


Sicilian Orange Cake needs no introduction. It is The perfect orange cake and was a blogsphere phenomenon in 2009. *Ellie of Almost Bourdain was the first to introduce this cake, a famous cake from the once popular *Cafe Agostini owned by Margie Agostini in Sydney. Rick Stein wrote the recipe in his book Mediterranean Escape Cookbook and credited this richest, moistest,butteriest and yet lightest cake to Marjie Agostini.

I have baked this cake countless times and this is the first time I am adding dried cranberries to this amazing cake. Cranberry and Orange are perfect match and though this combination tastes a little sweeter than usual, it is heavenly delicious. The recipe uses 250g of caster sugar and I always reduce it to 220g and unglazed.. This is also the first time I bake this cake in 2 small loaves and 6 small muffin cups, and glazed.

This is the best orange cake ever!

Sicilian Orange Cake with Cranberries
Adapted from Almost Bourdain
Makes 1 x 22 cm cake


250g lightly salted butter, at room temperature plus extra for greasing
250g caster sugar (220g)
4 medium eggs
1 1/2 tsp finely gragted orange zest (1 tablespoon)
250g self raising flour
85 ml freshly squeezed orange juice
150g dried cranberries

For the icing
125g icing sugar
5 tsp freshly squeezed orange juice


  • Preheat the oven to 170C . Grease and line a 22 cm clip-sided round cake with non-stick baking paper.(2 disaposable loaf pans, 6 muffin cups)
  • Using an electric whisk, cream the butter and sugar together for 4-5 minutes until very pale. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, beating very well between each one. If necessary adding a spoonful of flour with the last egg to prevent the mixture from curdling. Beat in the orange zest. Add the flour( and cranberries) all at once and mix in well, then slowly mix in the orange juice.
  • Spoon the mixture into the prepared tin and bake on the middle shelf of the oven for 45-50 minutes or until a skewer, inserted into the centre of the cake, comes out clean. If it it starts to brown too qickly cover loosely with a sheet of lightly buttered foil.(muffin cups 20 minutes, loaf 30 minutes)
  • Leave the cake, in its tin, to cool on a wire rack, then carefully remove the sides and base of the tin and peel off the paper. Put it onto a serving plate.
For the icing, sift the  icing sugar into a bowl and stir in the orange juice until you have a spreadable consistency,. Spread it over the top of the cake, letting it drip down the sides, leave to set. Serve cut into slices, and store any leftovers in an airtight container. ( smear in the centre and scatter cranberries)

*Cafe Agostini was closed in 2005.
*left Almost Bourdain

Linking this post to Little Thumbs Up "Orange" hosted by Ann, anncoo journal. Organised by Zoe from Bake for Happy Kids and Doreen from My little favourite DIY

Likewise, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. Matthew 7:17


  1. Hi Lian,

    Nice to learn from you that this is a great orange cake recipe. Bookmarked!!!


  2. I too have baked this delicious cake before, it was awesome and sinful and full of orange flavor....your addition of cranberries makes it so pretty!

    1. Hi Jeannie, Yes, really awsome cake. Think I added too much cranberries;)

  3. Hi Lian,
    The colour of your cake topping look so bright and pretty.
    Must be really yum with fruits sweetness and full of orange aroma.

    1. Hi Mui mui, I like the colour of cranberies on bakes. Really brightens up the cake.

  4. wow! i want to have the whole tin all by myself la.. love the colour and the flavour.

  5. I've never made an orange cake before... will KIV this recipe :)

  6. Hello Lian, Thanks for sharing this delicious cake with LTU. Really looks very pretty with the cranberries topping.

    1. Thanks Ann. Thanks for hosting this month's LTU.

  7. hi lian, i was just thinking to make this popular cake 2 days ago for submission to LTU event..maybe i should give it a try!


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