Ebinger's Orange Glazed Layer Cake with Orange Butter Filling

2-1/2 C. cake flour
1-1/2 t. baking powder
1/2 t. salt
2 sticks  unsalted butter, at room temperature, plus additional for the pan
2 C. granulated sugar
4 large eggs
2 t. vanilla extract
1 t. grated orange zest
1 C. whole milk

Orange Icing:
2 C. confectioners' sugar
1/2 C. water
2 T. granulated sugar
6 T. unsalted butter
4 t. grated orange zest

Orange Butter Cream Filling:
1 stick unsalted butter, at room temperature
1-1/4 C. confectioners' sugar
3 T. freshly squeezed orange juice
1/2 t. grated orange zest
1/2 t. vanilla extract

Position a rack in the middle of the oven. Preheat the oven to 350F. Butter the bottoms and sides of two 9-inch-diameter cake pans with 2-inch-high sides. Line bottoms with parchment or wax paper and butter the paper.

To make the cake:
Sift the flour, baking powder and salt together onto a piece of wax paper or into a medium bowl and set aside.

Put the butter and granulated sugar in a large bowl and beat with an electric mixer on medium speed until lightened in color and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Move the beaters around in the bowl if using a hand-held electric mixer. Stop the mixer and scrape the mixture from the sides of the bowl and from the beaters as needed throughout the mixing process. Put the eggs in a small bowl and stir them vigorously with a fork to blend the yolks and whites. Add the eggs in 3 additions, beating for 1 minute after each addition, stirring the vanilla and orange zest in with the last addition of eggs. Decrease the speed to low, and in 5 additions (3 flour, 2 milk) add the flour mixture and the milk alternately, beginning and ending with the flour mixture. Let each addition of milk and flour incorporate before adding another. The batter may look curdled after the milk additions. Scrape the sides of the bowl again after the last addition of flour. The batter is ready when the final addition of flour is mixed completely into the batter and the batter is smooth. If any flour clings to the sides of the bowl, stir it into the batter. If any orange zest clings to the beaters, scrape it off and stir it into the batter.

Pour the batter into the prepared pans, dividing it evenly between the 2 pans. Use a rubber spatula to scrape all of the batter from the bowl. Smooth the top.

Bake for about 37 minutes, until the top feels firm when touched lightly and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Cool the cakes in their pans for 10 minutes. Use a small sharp knife to loosen the cakes from the sides of each pan. Place a wire rack on the top of each cake and invert the cakes onto it. Carefully remove the papers lining the cake bottoms and replace them loosely on each cake. Let the cake layers cool thoroughly with the top sides down. Discard the paper liners.

To make the icing:
Sift the confectioners' sugar into a large bowl. Set aside. Heat the water, granulated sugar and butter in a small saucepan over low heat until the sugar dissolves and the butter melts, stirring often. Increase the heat to medium-high and boil the mixture for 3 minutes, stirring occasionally. Pour the hot mixture over the confectioners' sugar and add the orange zest. Use a whisk to mix the glaze smooth. Refrigerate the icing until it is cool to the touch and firm enough to spread, about 1 hour.

To make the filling:
Put the butter and confectioners' sugar in a medium bowl and beat with an electric mixer on medium speed until smooth, about 1 minute. Add the orange juice, orange zest and vanilla, mixing just to blend them smoothly into the mixture. Place a serving plate over the exposed side of 1 cake layer and, using the wire rack to hold the cake in place, invert the cake onto the serving plate. The top side of the cake layer will now be up. Spread the filling over the top of the cake layer, spreading it to the edges. Invert the second layer onto a plate and slide it onto the filled layer.

When the icing is firm enough to spread and adhere to the cake, use a thin metal spatula to spread it over the top and sides of the cake. The icing will still be pourable, and you should begin by pouring about two-thirds of the icing over the top and spreading it evenly. Then spread the remaining icing and any drips onto the sides of the cake. Refrigerate the cake, uncovered, to firm the icing; cover the cake with plastic wrap. Serve cold or let it sit at room temperature for 1 hour. The covered cake can be refrigerated up to 3 days.

Makes 12 servings.


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