I like to bake cakes first thing in the morning. I know, I know... they are not the best breakfast dishes, but I love the calm and stillness of an early morning. The entire process of stirring things together and shoving them into the oven, the peaceful waiting time and the heavenly aroma that fills home, sweetness seeping into every nook and corner at early hours of the day... all these make baking in the morning almost an addiction to me.
In fact, I am not even a morning person. I am totally nocturnal. Yet, somehow, I have found love in baking in the mornings. Of course I bake breads and other goodies too (which are far better for breakfast than cakes!)... nevertheless, a cake is a cake! And there is no denying it!
This semolina cake with a touch of orange citrus glaze justifies the effort taken. The orange glaze gives a touch of luxury to an already buttery cake, the orange pulp that sits on top of the cake being the crown . The cake has a grainier texture but is moist, and again to say, very buttery. It makes you want more.
Orange Vanilla Glazed Eggless Semolina Cake
Adapted from various sources
1.5 cups semolina (fine)
1 cup milk
1 cup yoghurt
1/2 cup butter (unsalted)
1 cup sugar
1 tsp baking soda,
1 tsp vanilla extract1/4 tsp salt
a few strands of saffron (optional)
For the Glaze:
3/4 cup sugar
1 orange (medium sized)
3/4 cup water
1 tsp orange zest
1 tsp vanilla extract
If semolina is not fine in texture, it can be ground using a mixer grinder until fine enough. Also, butter at room temperature is best for this. If using saffron, combine a Tbsp of warm milk and saffron stands and let them stand for at least 5 minutes before adding them to the batter. This releases the colour of the saffron.
Beat yoghurt and sugar together until sugar dissolves. Add butter and beat again until well combined. Add baking soda, salt and vanilla extract into the wet mixture, and mix well. Pour the milk over the semolina evenly. (And also the saffron milk, if using). Then pour the wet mixture into the semolina - milk mixture and stir until combined. Leave aside for at least an hour or up to 6 hours. This softens the semolina further.
Preheat the oven to 200 degree Celsius.
Grease a 8 or 9 inch cake pan. Pour in the batter and bake for 40 to 45 minutes or until set. (It took 45 minutes in my oven).
Meanwhile, prepare the glaze. Remove the pulp from the orange by peeling it. Combine sugar, orange pulp, zest and water. Heat in medium heat until boiling and slightly syrupy.
Remove the cake and poke a few holes in it. Pour the glaze on the cake when still warm and spoon the pulp over it. You will not need the entire glaze. Pour as much as you think will be needed by your taste buds!