Take four ripe oranges, and roll them under your hand on the table. Break up a pound of the best loaf-sugar, and on some of the pieces rub off the yellow rind of the oranges. Then cut the oranges, and squeeze their juice through a strainer. Powder the sugar, and mix the orange-juice with it; reserving a little of the juice to flavour the icing. Wash, and squeeze in a pan of cold water, a pound of the best fresh butter, till you have extracted whatever milk and salt may have been in it, as they will impede the lightness of the cake. Cut up the butter in the pan of sugar and orange, and stir it hard till perfectly light, white, and creamy. Sift into a pan fourteen ounces (two ounces less than a pound) of fine flour. Beat ten eggs till they are as thick and smooth as a fine boiled custard. Then stir them, by degrees, into the butter and sugar, alternately with the flour, a little of each at a time. Continue to beat the whole very hard for some time after all the ingredients are in; as this cake requires a great deal of beating. Have ready a large square, shallow pan, well buttered. Put in the mixture, and set it immediately into a brisk oven. It must be thoroughly baked, otherwise it will be heavy, streaked, and unfit to eat. The time of baking must of course be in proportion to its thickness, but it requires a much longer time than pound-cake, queen-cake, or Spanish buns. When it shrinks from the sides of the pan, and looks as if done, try it by sticking in the middle of it, down to the bottom, a twig from a corn-broom, or something similar. If 456 the twig comes out dry and clean, the cake is done; but if the twig remains moist and clammy, let the cake remain longer in the oven. When it is quite done, make an icing of beaten white of egg, and powdered loaf-sugar, mixed with a spoonful or more of orange juice. Dredge the cake with flour, then wipe off the flour and spread on the icing thick and evenly, scoring it in large squares. Before you put it into baskets, cut the cake into squares about the usual size of a Spanish bun. It should be eaten fresh, being best the day it is baked.
This cake will be found very fine. It is, of course, best when oranges are ripe and in perfection, as the orange flavour should be very high. We recommend that at the first trial of this receipt, the batter shall be baked in small tins, such as are used for queen-cake, or Naples biscuit, as there will thus be less risk of its being well baked than if done in a larger pan. When they seem to be done, one of the little cakes can be taken out and broken open, and if more baking is found necessary, the others can thus be continued longer in the oven. After some experience, an orange cake may be baked, like a pound cake, in a large tin pan with a tube in the centre; or in a turban mould, and handsomely iced and ornamented when done. A fine orange cake will, when cut, perfume the table.
Lemon cake may be made and baked in a similar manner. adding also a little lemon juice to the icing.