Blood Orange Cake (gluten-free)

A hearty and happy new year to you all. I’ve started the year as I intend to carry on – having my cake and eating it. You won’t find any self-abnegation in the Johansen household and as January sees the bodacious blood orange in its seasonal prime, I stock up on them daily (sometimes twice a day) from Andreas Fruit & Vegetables – the best greengrocer in London who also delivers to my local supermarket in Bloomsbury. I eat these crimson babies drizzled with pomegranate molasses on Greek Yoghurt most mornings throughout the new year and yesterday used a squirt of blood orange in a little larder cake rustled up from a few odds and ends lurking in the fridge and cupboards.

See what you think. Obviously if you don’t have blood oranges simply use oranges, or try lemons, limes or bergamots for a citrus twist. I like Grand Marnier but you may not in which case omit the booze or substitute with what you like.

Cake and booze. What more can a girl as for? Here’s to a great year!


  • 200g Self-Raising Gluten-Free Flour (I used Dove’s Farm)
  • 150g Golden Caster Sugar
  • 50g Ground Almonds
  • 250ml Greek Yoghurt
  • 125ml Mild Olive Oil or Rapeseed Oil
  • 3 Medium Eggs
  • 2 tbsp Honey
  • 2 tbsp Grand Marnier
  • 1 tsp Orange Blossom Water
  • Zest of 1 Blood Orange (save the juice for the icing)
  • 1/2 tsp Fine Sea Salt


  • 250g (or thereabouts) Icing Sugar
  • Juice of 1/2 Blood Orange
  • 1 tsp Grand Marnier (keep the rest for swilling later)


Preheat oven to 170 C. Lightly oil a 23cm round cake tin and dust with gluten-free flour.

In a medium-large mixing bowl place the flouyr, sugar and almonds. Stir a little so you don’t end up with one almondy end of the cake and a sugary end. Make a well in the middle and pop all the remaining cake ingredients in. Using n electric hand blender or your standing mixer, blitz all the ingredients for 1 minutes until you a have a smooth, thick batter.

Pour into the prepared cake tin and bake on the middle shelf of the oven for 40-45 minutes or until a skewer inserted comes out clean.

Allow the cake to cool on a wire rack before making the icing. Place the icing sugar in a bowl and stir in the blood orange juice along with a smidge of Grand Marnier using a fork or small whisk. If you’re lucky you will have a deep crimson orange that will give you pink icing. If not the flavour will still be excellent and your boyfriend will look slightly less embarrassed eating it.

Ice the cake by drizzling the icing over. If it’s quite runny then just add a little more icing sugar or ice in stages. It will set in a cool room quite quickly so you can layer icing over it until you have the consistency you like. The cake will keep for a few days in an airtight tin or container.



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11 Responses to Blood Orange Cake (gluten-free)

  1. Susan says:

    This is lovely. I *love* blood orange season. (Just made a similar cake myself!) I am with you on the cake and booze = happiness equation.

  2. clairetweet says:

    This looks lovely. I like cakes with ground almonds in. Have you ever tried making it as smaller individual cakes? Not sure with a slower cooked cake like this it would work but I’m wondering about giving it a try.

    • Signe says:

      I haven’t no, but imagine you could make little financiers with the mixture? I made some madeleines with leftover mixture and they came out great! Hope that helps, Sig x

  3. Kristin says:

    Hei. Flott side med så mange fristelser som jeg tilfeldigvis kom over. Du har talenter. Kommer til å følge med. Med vennlig hilsen Kristin

  4. Vix says:

    Looks very tasty, will have to get some blood oranges and try it! I use dove farm too, but sometimes use a bit of the gluten free bread flour with the plain ( I add my own raising agent) as I think the texture comes out better. I make christmas puddings with it, and you can’t tell they’re gluten free.

    • Signe says:

      Thanks for your comment Vix, yes do get some blood oranges while they’re in season! Thanks for the tip about mixing the two types of gluten-free flour, I shall try that. Sig x

  5. Pingback: Weekly Gluten-Free Roundup – January 15, 2012 « Celiac Kitchen Witch

  6. kirstin says:

    Oh my goodness, this looks delicious!
    I’ve just ordered your book from amazon and am counting the minutes until it’s delivered.

    • Signe says:

      That’s kind of you to say so Kirstin! Hope you enjoy cooking from the book, do report back here with comments or queries :-) Sig x

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