There’s almost nothing I like more than a tea cake disguised as a quick bread. If I will myself to forget about the butter (and sugar!), it’s just the sort of thing I can justify eating throughout the day, beginning with breakfast and continuing mid-afternoon and beyond. This orange-almond poppy seed tea cake is that kind of cake – soft and airy, perfumed with orange and almond and topped with a sweet orange drizzle.
Easily whipped up and popped into the oven in 10 minutes flat, this is the kind of cake ideal for impromptu guests or afternoon cravings that simply can’t be satisfied with a more sensible option (for the days when cake and only cake will do!). Delightful for spring and Easter, this all-occasion cake is simply plush and perfect.
Orange-Almond Poppy Seed Tea Cake
- 1 1/2 cups flour
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1/4 tsp baking soda
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1 Tbsp poppy seeds
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 1 Tbsp orange zest
- 1/4 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 1 large egg, at room temperature
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/4 tsp pure almond extract
- 1/4 cup plain fat-free Greek yogurt, at room temperature
- 3/4 cup low-fat buttermilk, at room temperature
- 1/2 Tbsp unsalted butter, melted
- 1/2 cup powdered sugar, sifted
- pinch of salt
- 1 tsp orange zest
- 1 Tbsp plus 1 tsp orange juice
- 3 drops pure almond extract
- Preheat oven to 350°F and spray a 9 x 5-inch loaf pan with nonstick spray. Whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and poppy seeds in a medium bowl. Place sugar and orange zest in a food processor and pulse for one minute.
- Beat butter and orange-sugar in a large mixer bowl at medium speed until light and fluffy; beat in egg, vanilla, and almond extract. Combine yogurt and buttermilk in a small bowl. Reduce speed to low and add half of flour mixture, beating just to combine. Add yogurt mixture, then finish with remaining flour mixture.
- Pour batter into prepared pan; smooth top with an offset spatula. Bake for 50 minutes, until edges are golden, cake springs back to the touch, and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean or with a few crumbs attached. Cool in pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes; carefully remove cake from pan and cool completely on wire rack.
- For the glaze, whisk together melted butter, powdered sugar, salt, orange zest, orange juice, and almond extract in a small bowl. Drizzle glaze over cooled cake and let set before serving. Store leftovers in an airtight container at room temperature.