The snow starts to melt and all of a sudden I am craving everything fresh and fruity. This Orange Blossom cake is exactly that. Fresh and fruity with a subtle floral hint, these orange blossom cake layers baked up to fluffy perfection. Paired with a zesty orange marmalade filling and a tangy whipped cream cheese buttercream frosting, this Orange Blosson cake was summer fresh and fruity floral perfection.
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Orange Blossom Cake Baking
Warmly scented wafts of orange blossom floated through my kitchen as the cake layers baked. I was hit with the most gorgeous fragrance of buttery summer when the oven door opened. The KitchenAid whizzed and whirled as it creamed together butter, shortening, and cream cheese in tangy delight. And the marmalade jar pop sang out as it unsealed abruptly ready to be spread on top of those waiting, those wanting, cake layers. This orange blossom cake was practically singing!
What is Orange Blossom Water?
Orange blossom water is the product of water distilling the blossoms from orange trees to produce essential oil. It has a remarkable and delicious floral scent and a bitter orange taste. Don’t confuse it with orange extract, which uses the actual orange fruit itself, orange blossom water gets its scent and flavor from the petals of an orange tree. It is often called orange flower water as well.
How Do I Bake With Orange Blossom Water?
Much like almond extract, or rosewater, a little goes a long way. If you are looking to add a flair of orange blossom to your baked goods, start small and add a teeny bit at a time. I started with a tablespoon in the cake batter and added a half tablespoon at a time until I achieved the desired flavor. In total, this cake only uses 2 tablespoons of orange blossom water.
What Can I Use Instead of Orange Blossom Water?
If you simply are not able to get your hands on orange blossom water and you still want to make this cake. Which I suggest you should, it was simply divine. The best alternative would be orange zest. Grab a few oranges and with a zester or microplane side of a cheesegrater, zest approximately 2 tablespoons worth of orange zest. Add the zest into the cake batter at the same time the recipe calls for the orange blossom water.
Cream Cheese Buttercream Tips & Tricks
Over my years with experimenting in the kitchen I have learned two things with dairy-free cream cheese buttercream frosting. The first being that it is delicious. Like so very darn yummy. Dairy-free (even lactose-free or plant-based) cream cheese has come a long way in the last few years and there are some really great options. Secondly, cream cheese frosting is softer than a typical American buttercream.
That being said, if you find your cake layers slipping around a bit when you are stacking them, stop what you are doing and put it in the fridge to firm up. Heck, throw it in the freezer for 10 minutes if you’re in a decorating rush. This will allow the frosting to set slightly and give the cake some stability as you continue to stack and decorate. If you feel a tad bit nervous, no need to do 6 layers as I did on this cake, stick with 3.
I think we’ve covered our Orange Blossom cake basics and you should be ready to bake, stack, and devour this amazingly delicious summer-inspired cake. Make sure you come back and let me know how it turned out!
If you gravitate towards fresh fruity and/or citrus flavors, you will enjoy these recipes too:
1 pkg. (8 oz.) dairy-free cream cheese, room temperature
6 ½ cups icing sugar
1 tsp. fine sea salt
1 tbsp. vanilla extract
Orange Blossom Cake
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and spray and parchment line three 6-inch round cake pans.
In a small mixing bowl whisk together the milk, vegetable oil, eggs, and orange blossom water. Set aside.
In the bowl of a stand mixer and with the flat beater attachment, combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt and give it a quick mix together for approximately 1 minute.
In small pieces, slowly add the butter into the dry ingredients and mix on low until it looks like coarse sand.
Slowly pour in approximately half of the liquid mixture and mix on low for 2 minutes.
Pour the remaining liquid mixture in and mix on medium for another 2 minutes. Scrap the sides of the bowl when necessary.
Divide the cake batter into the three prepared cake pans and bake for approximately 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with a few moist crumbs.
Allow the cake layers to cool for 10 minutes and then invert them on a cooling rack to fully cool.
Cream Cheese Buttercream
In the bowl of a stand mixer beat the butter, shortening, and cream cheese on high speed with the paddle attachment until light and fluffy, approximately 10 minutes.
Add the icing sugar, salt, and vanilla extract and mix on low until combined.
Turn the mixer up to high and let mix for 5 minutes until smooth and creamy. Scrape the sides of the bowl when necessary.
Level each cooled cake layer in half with a cake leveler or serrated knife.
Place one leveled layer of orange blossom cake on a cake board, plate, and/or cake turntable. Top with approximately ¾ cup of buttercream and ¼ cup of orange marmalade.
Repeat with the remaining layers and apply a thin coat of buttercream all over the cake. Refrigerate for 20 minutes. **
Cover the cake with another layer of buttercream and very roughly smooth the sides with a cake smoother.
Decorate the cake as you please. I used the tip of my offset spatula and very lightly dragged horizontal lines from the bottom going up and around the entire cake. The bottom has a little bit of Drenched In Diamonds glittery sugar and the top is covered with thin orange slices and fresh flowers. Enjoy!
* Use 2 tbsp. of orange zest if you do not have orange blossom water
** If the cake layers are moving around a bit while filling and stacking, pop the cake into the fridge or freezer and let it chill a bit. This will stabilize the soft cream cheese buttercream and allow for easier stacking/decorating.