Orange chiffon cake

Chiffon cakes are one of my favorite things.  So it's part of my regular programming to make one.  I was getting ready to make my favorite, a classic "plain" vanilla one, the other day when I saw an orange version from Martha.  I've always wanted to make an orange chiffon cake and since I've enjoyed other occasions where I branched out, I made the orange version.  I have no regrets!
I think of this as one big, bright, bouncy orange chiffon cake.  It's just as it should be - lofty, fluffy, light and moist.  Orange zest and fresh orange juice give it plenty of flavor so there's no doubt it's an orange chiffon cake.  Adding citrus is a small way of adding some sunshine and brightness to these winter days.  I think we can all lighten and brighten our moods a bit with our food.
This is a great cake for January, before we bring on the richer chocolate treats for February and Valentine's Day.  You are planning on making some chocolate treats, aren't you?  It's hard to believe we're already at the tail end of January already.  Once upon a time, I thought the first month of the year dragged on but as I get older, time flies out the door and vanishes somehow.  Nevertheless, there's still a few days left to the month.  If you're in the mood for cake, I'm offering this as my suggestion.


I love that moment when I pull a finished chiffon cake out of the oven.  It smells amazing and I am always amazed by the transformation in the oven.  
This one has 6 whole eggs in it.  The egg whites and baking powder lift it nearly to the top of my big tube pan.  You can see the yellow-orange tone of the cake batter from the egg yolks and oranges.  It's almost hard to imagine how these two bowls below combine to make the cake above.
It's one big bouncy cake, making plenty for sharing.  I also love how it stays moist for several days.  Just wrap it tightly in plastic wrap and store it at room temperature.  
I cut myself a slice...and usually go back for seconds. 

Recipe:

Orange Chiffon Cake
From Martha Stewart

- Makes a big cake that serves 10-16 - 

2 cups all-purpose flour
4 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups sugar, divided
1/2 cup canola (or other neutral-tasting such as safflower) oil
6 large eggs, separated
2 tablespoons finely grated orange zest
1/2 cup fresh orange juice (from about 2-3 navel or Valencia oranges)
1/4 cup cold water
1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar

Preheat oven to 325 degrees with a rack positioned in the middle position.

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt, and 1 cup of sugar. Make a well in the center of the mixture.  Add oil, egg yolks, orange zest and juice, as well as the water.  Whisk together, starting in the center, and working your way out to fully incorporate the batter.

Place egg whites and cream of tartar into the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment.  Beat on medium-high speed until soft peaks, then gradually add the remaining 1/2 cup of sugar, about a tablespoon at a time, until stiff peaks form. Using a large rubber spatula, fold half the beaten egg whites into the batter.  Fold in the remaining whites until just combined (to avoid deflating the whites).

Pour batter into a 10-cup angel food cake pan or tube pan, smoothing the top. Bake until a cake tester inserted into the center comes out clean, approximately 50-60 minutes.  Remove pan from the oven and invert (either on its legs if the pan has them or set the cake pan upside down over a heavy bottle) to cool completely.  Remove the cake by running a sharp knife around the sides of the pan, angling the knife towards the pan to try and keep the crust intact.




61 comments:

  1. Your orange chiffon is perfect, Monica. It looks so light and soft!

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    1. Thanks so much, Angie. It is most definitely light and soft!

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  2. That looks wonderful! I always loved chiffon cake, has such a nice fluffy texture :)

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    1. Chiffons are one of my favorites, for sure. Thank you!

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  3. This lovely orange cake would bring a spot of sunshine to a dreary day! It looks so light and fluffy! :)

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    1. It is a little bit of sunshine and believe me, I need it right now with a ton of snow coming our way! :)

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  4. Damn delicious citrusy chiffon cake!!!
    seems so smooth and spongy...

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    1. Thanks...it's a nice light dessert. : )

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  5. Hi Monica, I have never made a chiffon cake before, this looks so light and delicious.

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    1. I hope you try it one day, Cheri. It is one of my favorites...easy to make and so light yet satisfying!

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  6. Hello Monica! What a lovely cake! I love it!
    I'm dying to give your recipe a try!

    PS. I'm organizing a chocolate contest on my bilingual blog. Maybe you'd like to join us? :)

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    1. Glad you like it, thank you, Marcela!

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  7. Oh wow, this looks amazing! I love orange flavor in my cake but have never made a chiffon cake.

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    1. I hope you make one soon! I have a feeling you would really like it. : )

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  8. This looks stunning! I'm totally in to citrus flavors lately and let's be real, I'm always in to cake so I'm definitely bookmarking this cake :)

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    1. haha - I love your attitude; your "realness" totally comes across loud and clear! : ) Hope you have time to try a chiffon one day. It's easy and stays moist for days.

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  9. Orange chiffon cake looks irresistible to me. Beautiful flavours and yummy cake :)

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    1. Thanks, Ritu. Glad you're a fan of it, too.

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  10. I cannot get enough of orange zest in baking right now! I've even been putting it in my oatmeal! (which is not baking but you get my point :) ) This cake looks absolutely delicious! Hope you are having a great weekend!

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    1. Orange zest in oatmeal!? Woah! I love how adventurous you are! I haven't even gotten around to toasting my oats first, which I'm curious about for sure! Crazy snow coming down over here...I need cake and coffee! ; )

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  11. What a beautiful chiffon cake! I love the citrus flavours. I also love the moment you pull a chiffon cake out of the oven - I swear the smell is heavenly!!

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    1. Yes! That moment when you see it's risen and that smell of eggs and vanilla in the air...totally intoxicating!

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  12. Ooo I might try this with some blood oranges! The citrus infusion must make this such a refreshing sweet treat!

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  13. What a beautiful cake, Monica! I'm a bit jealous...I cannot get my cakes to rise so beautifully at my altitude. Cake baking is a nightmare and I seriously envy all the sea level bakers!
    Your cake looks so fluffy and it has such a lovely texture, grant job, Monica!

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    1. Oh my - not being able to bake cakes would be sad for me these days! Chiffons are wonderful but probably very sensitive to altitude. I'm glad you make up for the trouble with cakes by cooking up all your other wonderful foods.

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  14. I can't believe how quickly this month went by too! It felt like a whirlwind! You make the prettiest chiffon cakes :) I love the citrus flavors in here and can just imagine how amazing this must have smelled and tasted. It looks so light and pretty and I totally want to reach in and swipe that piece off the plate :)

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    1. January used to drag but not anymore! I love how chiffon cakes make it look like the baker did something special when it just kinda comes out all fluffy and huge! haha...I always crave it.

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  15. Chiffon cake is one of my favourite things too, and orange flavoured sounds even more wonderful!

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    1. I wish my son was more into orange-flavored bakes but I sneak it in as much as possible. Thanks, Aimee.

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  16. Ooh look at that gorgeous texture!! It looks out of this world fantastic Monica :D

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    1. I love chiffon textures - thanks, Lorraine!

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  17. This looks like a great cake to share at a work-related function. I love the citrus and have never tried making a chiffon cake - what is wrong with me! Hope you are all warm at home - looks like you have a little weather coming your way. We're going to get off easy - just south of DC - maybe an inch? Hope it warms up fast - this has been a dreary winter indeed!

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    1. Absolutely a great big cake for a crowd...and people tend to be surprised by how light and moist it is. The original chiffon I make is well loved by many and I'm so glad I found the recipe and can make it whenever the urge hits (often). We got lucky with the snow storm! Thank goodness!!!

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  18. I've never had a chiffon cake but it looks gorgeous! What a lovely tall cake :)

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    1. It is one of my favorites - no joke...I make it often and I just love chiffon cakes. Hope you try it one day!

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  19. I saw this cake on Martha Bakes as well and have been wanting to try it. Looks fantastic!

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    1. Hi there! : ) After all these years, Martha always seems to know what I want! I first saw the pic on her site then watched the episode. It is so delicious - I can vouch. :)

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  20. This orange chiffon cake looks so beautiful and perfect! I think orange and chocolate would be a great combo for a February dessert, just sayin' (:

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    1. I never get tired of that combo, Monica...it's amazing I didn't add chocolate here. haha. That said, I have made (and posted) a banana-chocolate chiffon. It was so awesome...the key for me was grating the chocolate so you have these gorgeous flakes in there...

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  21. Oh. Em. Gee. This chiffon cake is PERFECT! Just perfect! I want to reach into my screen and have a taste.

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  22. Nice cake. If you like orange then you can try Orange cake recipe. Instead of orange you can try your favorite fruit also.

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    1. There's always room for more cake...thanks.

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  23. This is indeed a perfect chiffon cake for lifting the January gloom Monica! Fabulous flavours and wonderfully light. Bravo!

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    1. Thank you, Jo. It definitely cheered me up to bake it, see it, smell it, and eat it! : )

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  24. CHIFFONNNNNN! LOVE chiffon cakes: so retro, and yes, SO big and bouncy and way easy to eat seconds (or thirds!) of in one sitting. i love all the orange in there: you can totally see it and i can just imagine how lovely this tastes, particularly at this cold and dreary time of year.

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    1. It's definitely a favorite of mine; I usually cut a small slice because I almost always go back for another "sliver". : )

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  25. What a beautiful cake, Monica! Chiffon cake is the best! Light and fluffy. I could imagine this cake with some fresh berries or chocolate sauce. Nommm...

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    1. You always know how to take things up a notch, my friend! Love that!

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  26. I cannot agree more Monica! Citrus is so January while chocolate has to be aplenty in February. All great pastry-minds think alike! This cake is so beautiful with the fluffy texture and hint of orange-yellow.

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    1. My mind is no where on your pastry calibre, Sonali...but thank you! : ) The color cheered me up and eating any chiffon always makes me smile so mission accomplished!

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  27. A dreamy chiffon cake! Love the flavor here and its so light!

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    1. Thanks, Kiran. It's great with a cup or tea (or chai). : )

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  28. This is a keeper for me! Yeah the chocolate and orange goes well together and good thinking! I love your chiffon cake and I'd love to make this one. I love oranges (or any citrus) in sweets! What a perfect chiffon cake. Wish you live near me. I'll go to your baking class. I'm serious!

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    1. I imagine you would like a simple but moist chiffon, Nami. Thanks for all your kind words. : )

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  29. wow its really great chiffon cake recipe i'll try this so yummy thanks for sharing.

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  30. very useful recipe. I found this blog very later but I am glad I did. I am going to try these tips.

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  31. this information is very useful post for me thanks for sharing with us. It is really a great post.

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  32. Great recipe i want to try this. Really it will help lot of people. Thanks for the post

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