Orange Poppy Seed Cake

Orange Poppy Seed Cake



  • 1/4 cup poppy seeds
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • 1 3/4 cups caster sugar
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 small oranges, cut into 5mm slices plus extra for 3 tsp finely grated orange zest
  • 1/2 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
  • 185g butter, at room temperature
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 3/4 cups self-raising flour, sifted
  • Ice cream, to serve


  1. Preheat oven to 180°C (160°C fan-forced). Grease and line base and sides of a 20cm square cake tin with baking paper.
  2. Combine poppy seeds and milk in a small bowl and leave to stand for 20 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, in a medium-sized saucepan, combine 1 cup of the sugar and water over a medium heat. Cook, stirring, for 2-3 minutes, or until sugar dissolves. Bring to the boil. Reduce heat, and simmer, uncovered, for 2 minutes.
  4. Add orange slices. Simmer, covered, for 10-12 minutes, or until peel is soft. Using tongs, transfer the orange slices to a plate and leave to cool.
  5. Add half of the orange juice to the remaining syrup. Bring to the boil, and boil uncovered for 10-12 minutes, or until thickened slightly. Strain syrup into a heatproof jug and set aside.
  6. Arrange orange slices, overlapping slightly, into the base of the prepared tin.
  7. In a medium bowl, using an electric mixer, beat butter, zest and remaining sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in eggs, 1 at a time, until just combined. Stir in sifted flour, then the poppy seed mixture and remaining juice.
  8. Spoon mixture over oranges in pan and smooth surface. Bake for 1 hour, or until a skewer comes out clean when inserted into the middle. Cool in pan for 10 minutes before turning out onto a wire rack set over a baking tray.
  9. Brush warm cake with half the syrup. Serve with ice cream, and remaining syrup drizzled over top.
  10. Helpful Tip
  11. You can cut cake into serving sized portions and then freeze. Place frozen cake into a lunchbox. Then, by morning or afternoon tea time, it will be ready to eat.
  13. • Energy 1153Kj • Protein 4g • Total Fat 12g • Saturated Fat 7g • Carbohydrates 38g • Sugars 29g • Sodium 108mg