When I saw this cake baked by Joyce of Kitchen Flavours, I immediately bookmarked it for baking as it looked so scrumptious and moist! Glad I baked this as soon as I had some free time, it tasted very delicious as I suspected it would be...not to mention it was quite easy to put together too. Even though I only added the zest from one orange, the flavor was surprisingly distinct and mingled well with chocolate. A delightful cake to enjoy with a cup of tea:)
Chocolate Orange Loaf Cake
(adapted from "Nigella Kitchen" by Nigella Lawson)
Cuts into 10 slices @ 251 calories each
1-1/4 sticks (10 tablespoons) soft unsalted butter, plus extra for greasing (160gm)
dab flavorless vegetable oil, for greasing syrup spoon
2 tablespoons golden syrup or dark corn syrup
1 cup (packed) dark brown sugar (I use scant 3/4 cup light brown sugar)
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
3 tablespoons best-quality unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted
zest of 2 regular orange and juice of 1 (1/3 cup) (I used only the zest and juice of one orange as that is the only orange left)
1 x 2-pound loaf pan (I use 8-1/2"x4-1/2" loaf pan)
Preheat the oven to 325F and line your loaf pan with parchment paper and grease the sides, or line with a paper loaf-pan liner. I just greased and floured my pan.
Beat the already soft butter with the syrup - if you dab a little oil on your tablespoon measure with a sheet of paper towel, the syrup shouldn't stick to the spoon - and the sugar until you have a fairly smooth cafe Americano cream, although the sugar will still have a bit of grit about it.
Mix the flour, baking soda, and cocoa powder together, and beat into the syrup mixture, 1 tablespoonful of these dry ingredients, before beating in 1 egg. Then add another couple of spoonfuls of the dry ingredients before beating in the second egg.
Carry on beating in the remaining dry ingredients and then add, still beating, the orange zest and finally, gradually, the juice. At this stage, the batter may suddenly look dimpled, as if slightly curdled. No need to panic!
Pour and scrape into the prepared pan and bake for 45 minutes, but do check 5 minutes before and be prepared to keep it in the oven 5 minutes longer if need be. A cake tester won't come out entirely clean, as the point of this cake, light though it may be, is to have just a hint of inner stickiness. Let cool a little in its pan on a wire rack, then turn out with care and leave on the rack to cool.