I have been having a tough week. One thing after another seems to come up at work and two nights in a row, I ended up leaving the office at 9:30 at night. Too bad there’s no such thing as overtime!  But that means my favorite thing, cooking, has really taken a back seat to absolutely everything else.

I get up at 6 in the morning to spend some time with the dog, and run to work at 9, then spend all day at the office, usually eating lunch at my desk to try to meet a deadline, and then leaving late. Even the normal nights saw me leaving at 7, which means dinner can’t get started until 7:30, eating at 8:30… It just feels like a balancing act that I am sorely losing.

My feeling constantly behind the ball means absolutely nothing outside of work gets my attention if it will take more than 30 minutes. This cake? Well, about 10 minutes to toss together the ingredients, and then I could play with the dog for an hour while it baked. And the result? Fragrant and moist cake that we could enjoy all week. The world could use more recipes like that.

Orange cake
from Technicolor Kitchen

for the cake

½ cup + 1 tablespoon (127g) unsalted butter, softened
¾ cup + 1 tablespoon (162g) caster sugar
2 eggs
1 ½ cups + 2 ½ tablespoons (225g) all purpose flour, sifted
1 ¼ teaspoons baking powder, sifted
1 tablespoon milk
finely grated zest of 1 large orange
4 tablespoons orange juice

for the glaze
1 ¼ cups (175g) icing sugar, sifted
2 tablespoons orange juice
zest of 1 orange, to decorate

1. Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°; butter a 20x10cm (8x4in) loaf pan and line with baking paper; butter the paper as well.

2. Place the butter and sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer and beat for 8-10 minutes or until light and creamy. Add the eggs, one at a time, and beat well. Add the flour and baking powder and mix well. Add the milk, orange juice and zest and mix until smooth.

3. Spoon the mixture into the prepared pan and bake for 55 minutes or until golden and cooked when tested with a skewer. Cool slightly on a wire rack, then carefully unmold. Or if you’re impatient like me, just unmold it. It’s going to be covered in glaze anyway.

4. To make the glaze: combine the sugar and orange juice in a small bowl and mix to form a smooth paste. While the cake is still a a bit warm, glop the glaze down the center length of the cake, and the warmth of the cake will melt the icing, leaving just the perfect amount of sweetness behind. If you wish, top with more zest. (I ran out of skin on my orange to zest, so you’ll notice no zest on my cake.)