Bitter Orange Poppy Seed Cake
Recipe type: Tea cake
Cuisine: Mediterranean
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 6-8 people
Using the first fruit of spring, this citrusy cake blends Indian influences with Mediterranean staples for a wholesome slice of cake for tea.
  • ½ cup fruity extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup wheat flour
  • ½ cup medium grind cornmeal
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp each salt and baking soda
  • 1 tsp cardamom seeds
  • 3 tbsp poppy seeds
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup roughly chopped bitter oranges
  • ¾ cup granulated sugar
  • 10 tiny bitter oranges (1 cup roughly chopped bitter oranges), pureed
  • 2 tbsp orange flower water
  1. Make cake: Preheat oven to 180C/350F
  2. In an electric mixer, blitz ½ cup sugar and 1 cup oranges until pureed verging on coarse.
  3. In a bowl, combine flour, cornmeal, baking powder, salt, baking soda, cardamom, and poppy seeds.
  4. Fold in the sugar-orange puree, eggs, olive oil and stir until well blended.
  5. Pour into baking paper-lined rectangular cake mould.
  6. Bake until golden and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, 30 to 35 minutes.
  7. While the cake is cooking, bring to a boil in a small pan the remaining ¾ cup sugar and pureed oranges. Reduce over low heat until sirupy. Add orange flower water.
  8. When cake gets out of the oven, pour the hot syrup on top and let cool inside the mould.
  9. Serve sliced at room temperature with a cup of hot tea (I would be partial to a Lapsang Souchong or Russian smoky tea).
  10. Enjoy!
Recipe by Frog Mom at