This elegant cake is the perfect way to treat Mum this Mother's Day. Candied orange slices are a stylish decoration, topping off four layers of tender orange and almond sponge sandwiched with creamy almond buttercream.
- To make the candied orange, heat 2cm water in a pan large enough to fit the orange slices in one layer. Bring to the boil and add the orange slices; the water should cover them completely. Cook for 5 mins over a medium heat, then drain. Set aside the oranges. Return the pan to the heat, add the sugar and 200ml water and heat, stirring, until the sugar has dissolved. Add the orange slices back in and cook, uncovered, over a low heat for 1 hr or until very tender. Remove with a slotted spoon and leave to cool on a wire rack for 1 hr.
- Preheat the oven to gas 6, 200°C, fan 180°C. Grease and line the bases of 4 x 20cm round cake tins. Put all the cake ingredients in a bowl and beat with an electric whisk for 2 mins until light and fluffy. Divide the mixture between the prepared tins and bake for 20-25 mins until golden and springy to the touch. Cool in the tins, then turn out and peel off the baking paper.
- To make the buttercream, beat the butter with an electric whisk for 2 mins until smooth and pale. Add the icing sugar and almond extract; whisk for 3-4 mins until pale and fluffy. Whisk in the milk 1 tsp at a time until spreadable.
- To assemble the cake, place 1 sponge on a plate and spread a quarter of the buttercream on top. Sprinkle over a third of the chopped almonds, then top with a second sponge. Repeat with the remaining sponges, almonds and buttercream, finishing with the final quarter of buttercream. Smooth with a large palette knife dipped in hot water.
- Arrange the candied orange and whole almonds on half the cake. It will keep for 4 days in an airtight container at room temperature.
Freezing and defrosting guidelines (freeze undecorated sponge, wrapped in clingfilm)
In order to enjoy optimum flavour and quality, frozen items are best used within 3 months of their freezing date. For more tips on freezing and defrosting food, read our article Love Your Freezer.
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As part of a healthy diet, we recommend this recipe for a special occasion or treat.