Blood orange pain d’epices

If it is out of the season for blood oranges, other good quality orange varieties such as Jaffa or navel can be replacements. This recipe uses heart healthy olive oil rather than butter.
Serves: 12
Preparation time: 10 mins
Cooking time: 60-65 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 60ml milk (don’t used skimmed milk)
  • Pinch salt
  • 2 star anise
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 150g soft brown sugar
  • 275g plain flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 2 large eggs
  • 70ml Filippo Berio Classico Olive Oil
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 2 tsp mixed spice
  • 60g candied peel

3 blood oranges :

  • Juice of 1 blood orange
  • Zest of 2 blood oranges
  • Additionally, some slices of orange for decoration from one of the zested blood oranges

Method:

  1. First of all, pour the milk into the saucepan and add in the salt, cinnamon sticks and star anise
  2. Warm the milk over a mid-heat, ensuring it does not come to the boil, and then leave to infuse for 15 minutes
  3. While the milk is infusing, turn on your oven to 180 *C fan / 200*C conventional
  4. Grease and line your loaf tin
  5. Slice one of the zested blood oranges and select 4-5 of the nicest slices and set aside
  6. Weigh out the remaining dry ingredients into the bowl
  7. Sieve the cinnamon sticks and start anise from the milk, and add the milk into the bowl and lightly mix
  1. Now mix in the eggs, oil, peel, orange juice and zest
  2. The mixture will take a little gentle mixing to incorporate the oil and juice fully
  3. Pour into the prepared loaf tin and place the slices of orange on top, arranging them as you wish
  4. Place the prepared cake in the centre of the oven
  5. Bake for 45-50 minutes. The top will be well risen, and a skewer will come out clean when inserted for testing

Cooks tips:

This is a lovely cake on its own, but it is especially delicious with a little softly whipped cream or a vanilla ice cream (and even spread with a little marmalade first!)