Thursday, 8 January 2015

Steamed Orange & Egg Cake

This is a non-dairy cake which uses freshly squeeze orange juice in place of milk. The addition of orange peel enhances the fresh aroma of the cake. The texture is surprising soft and can last till the next day. I am not sure about keeping it beyond 2 days as the small cake was gobbled down before it could reach the end of the second day :)

Yield: one 14 cm round cake

All ingredients in room temperature 
75g top/cake flour 低筋面粉
1/4 tsp baking powder 泡打粉

2 egg whites 蛋白
1/4 tsp lemon juice 柠檬汁
55g fine sugar 细糖

2 egg yolks 蛋黄
55g orange juice 橙汁
1 tsp grated orange peel 橙皮削
15g vegetable oil 植物油

A few thin orange rind for decoration 一些橙皮丝做装饰用

1. Line a 14cm cake tin with parchment paper. Set aside.

2. Loosen flour with baking powder using a hand whisk.

3. Mix orange juice, grated orange peel and vegetable oil in a bowl. Set aside.

4. Beat egg whites in a clean and grease free mixing bowl at high speed using an electric mixer till frothy. This takes about 15 seconds. 
After the egg white turns frothy, add in the lemon juice, and beat at low speed for about 10 seconds.

5. Keep the mixer speed at low, add in the sugar in three lots. When the sugar is well incorporated to the batter, adjust the mixer speed to high, and beat the egg white batter for about 1~ 2 minutes, or till soft peaks formed (when lift up the whisks, the tip of the egg white slightly bent). Beat the egg white for another 1/2 minute at low speed.

6. Add in egg yolks, one at a time, to the egg white batter and mix well.

7. Start to boil a small pot of water, to be ready for steaming the cake later.

8. Sieve in 1/3 of the flour mixture from (2), and mix manually using the whisks removed from the electric mixer. Stop mixing after about 3 to 4 strokes. This is to prevent deflating the batter too much and too fast.
Streaks of flour are alright. They will disappear in the subsequent mixing.

9. Add in 1/2 of the orange mixture from (3) to the batter using the whisks. 
将1/2的橙汁混合物 (3)慢慢的倒入面糊上,用打蛋器轻轻的和上层的面糊混均才做整体混合。

Add in the remaining flour and orange mixture in alternating sequence, in the pattern of 

10. Finally, use a spatula to make a more thorough mixing by scrapping the side and bottom of the mixing bowl up. While scrapping and mixing, try to bang the mixing bowl a few times to get rid of trapped air.
Similarly, try to mix the batter with minimum mixing stroke.

10.  Pour the batter slowly into the lined cake tin. This helps to break the trapped air bubbles when the batter flows down. Give the cake tin a few hard sturdy jerks to get rid of trapped air parcel in the batter.

Decorate the cake with the long orange peel.

11. Put a steamer stand into the pot with boling water. Lower the cake tin into the pot. Steam the cake at medium high temperature for 9 minutes. Then reduce the heat to medium low for another 9 minutes.

12. Insert a thin stick into the middle of the cake to test the readiness of the cake. If the cake is done, remove from the pot. Before transferring the cake to a cooling rack, drop the cake and tin from about 15cm height to the work top. This helps to prevent the cake from excessive shrinking. 

13. Remove the cake from the cake tin after about 5 minutes and let it cool on the wire rack.

Baking tips:
1. Peel the orange rind without the whitish part as the whitish part is bitter.

2. It's best to steam using a glass lid as you'll be able to keep a closer look at the rising cake. The ingredients or the batter temperature will determine the steaming time. 
When the cake rises from a concave top  to a convex top, you can start to reduce the heat slightly. Over risen cake may shrink and have a tougher top when cool down.


  1. Hi!

    I attempted this recipe of yours yesterday evening. The cake turned out nice. The taste of orange is quite strong albeit I only had 1/2 tsp or less of orange rind. The texture was soft, just like sponge or chiffon cake.

    However, my cake turned out to have an extremely wrinkled top when cooked. And it shrank extremely fast albeit I dropped it from a height just like how you did.

    Can I know what is the cause for the wrinkled top? Could it be the water from the lid that got onto the cake top?

    Thank you!

    Siaw Tan

    1. Hi Siaw Tan, happy to know that you like the cake.
      I think your steam maybe too strong, which caused your cake to rise too high. So when the temperature reduced, the over risen cake will collapse badly which caused your cake to wrinkle :)

  2. Hi can I use RC for this recipe?Thank

    1. Hi Cassandra, I would not advise you to use RC for steaming cake as you cannot control the heat of the RC. And the cake tends to over-steamed and collapse :)

  3. Hi i did try to steam this kind of cake before but the cake shrink once i opened the cover, do you know why? but i din add in baking powder, is it due to that?

    1. Hi June, from my experience, there are two main reason for the shrinkage of your steamed cake.
      1. You may have over mixed the batter. In the initial few mixings, it's okay to have streaks of flour remaining as the subsequent and final mixings can solve it. If you keep mixing in one direction, gluten will build up and resulting in a shrink cake. Try to do clockwise and anti clockwise mixing to reduce this problem.
      2. Prolong heating in high temperature may cause the cake to shrink after cooling down.
      Start with high temperatures, when the cake starts to plateau, reduce the temperature to low and continue till the cake is cooked. Hence, it would be better if the steamer has a glass top so you can observe the raise of the cake.
      Hope these help :)

    2. Thanks so much. I think shld be high heat caused it to shrink. i will try again :)

    3. wanna ask if use self raising flour then no need baking powder right?

  4. Hi,

    I did this today! Love all your receipe. But I am struggles with 15g is it equal to 15ml?Thanks!

    1. Hi, thank you for sharing. 15g of condensed milk is about 1.5 tsp :)

    2. 55g of orange juice =5.5 tsp and 15g oil =1.5 tsp right. Thanks !

    3. As the densities of orange juice and oil are different, you can't do a 1:1 conversion. 55g of orange juice is about 11 tsp. Sorry I'm not sure 15g of oil is equivalent to how many tsp. But I think it's about 2 tbsp of oil :)

    4. For this receipe, how do you measure 15g? what did u use to measure? :) thanks for the prompt reply. Really appreciate it.

    5. It's easier to measure using a digital scale. The spring type of scale is rather difficult to measure small quantity ;)

  5. Thanks! Really need to invest digital scale!

    1. It's a good investment if you intend to bake regularly:)


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