Orange & yoghurt cakes

Orange & yoghurt cakes

Paris Pastry Club
8 small cakes
Helen Cathcart

This is the cake of my childhood, of Sunday mornings at the beach and Wednesday afternoon goûters (snacks) at home. My mum used to make it every week. At times I would help her too – in fact, the only recipe she has is a drawing I made with felt-tip pens and a not-so-steady hand.

In those days, we wouldn’t weigh anything but would measure the flour, sugar and butter using the empty yoghurt pot. And we’d bake the cake in a large tin.

You could do the same and bake it in a large cake tin, generously buttered and lined with baking paper, but I have a soft spot for plump little oranges filled with the crumbly and melt-in-your-mouth cake, just like the oranges givrées (frozen oranges) my grandmother would make for birthdays. To make one large cake, bake at 180°C for 35–40 minutes.


Quantity Ingredient
8 oranges
200g plain flour
1/2 tablespoon baking powder
120g yoghurt
3 eggs
175g caster sugar
2 oranges, zested
60g butter, melted
30g caster sugar, for the orange syrup


  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C.
  2. Wash and dry the oranges. Slice off the tops, scoop out the flesh using a metal spoon and set aside in a bowl. Arrange the empty oranges sitting cut-side-up on a muffin tray.
  3. Combine all the ingredients in a large bowl and mix well until smooth.
  4. Divide the batter between the prepared oranges until each is two-thirds full and bake for 25–30 minutes or until golden-brown and a skewer inserted into the centre of each cake comes out clean.
  5. Strain the orange flesh through a fine-mesh sieve over a jug, squeezing as you go to extract as much juice as possible.
  6. Place the juice and extra caster sugar in a small pan and bring to the boil over medium heat. Simmer for 10–15 minutes or until reduced by half; set aside until needed.
  7. When the cakes are still warm from the oven, drench each with a little of the hot orange syrup.
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