Orange and Lavender Upside Down Cake

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This is my favourite kind of cake. The simple, sticky and jammy kind, with caramelised golden oranges. As the oranges bake in a bitter pool of caramel, they produce the best toffee-like edges. The cake itself has the dreamiest texture, and is more than just a canvas for the caramelised oranges, as the beautiful scent of lavender wafts into the air as you cut into it.

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Ingredients:

  1. 1 tablespoon butter
  2. 3 tablespoons brown sugar
  3. 2 teaspoons dried lavender
  4. 100 g olive oil
  5. 50 g Greek yogurt
  6. 2 oranges
  7. zest of 1 orange
  8. 2 eggs
  9. 140 g sugar
  10. ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  11. 120 g flour
  12. 1 tsp baking powder
  13. ¼ teaspoon salt

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 180°C.
  2. Generously grease  a sheet cake pan with butter. Sprinkle the brown sugar on top.
  3. Thinly slice the oranges, remove any seeds, and place them in a single layer at the bottom of the cake pan. You can remove the pith, if you don’t like the bitter taste. Set  the pan aside.
  4. In a mixing bowl, whisk together the olive oil and Greek yogurt.
  5. Add the dried lavender to the sugar and rub together with your hands until the sugar smells of lavender.
  6. In a separate bowl, whisk the eggs, lavender sugar and vanilla extract and orange zest until the mixture is light and almost double in volume.
  7. Sift the flour, baking powder and salt. Gently fold in the flour mixture into the egg mixture. Add the oil and yogurt to the batter and stir until smooth.
  8. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 30-35 minutes.
  9. Cool the cake for 5 minutes before inverting it onto a plate to cool completely.

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