Wow. That may officially be the longest blog title ever. Nevertheless, this is my first week baking along with the ladies at Sweet Melissa Sundays (SMS), and I am crazy excited to be along! This week's recipe was chosen by Leslie of Lethally Delicious. I'm hoping this group will help me broaden my horizons on what I can make. I tend to stick in my cookie-bar comfort zone and don't venture out too often. I also need to send out a big thanks to my mother for letting me takeover her kitchen today after our impromptu trip back to our hometown this weekend.
There were a lot of "firsts" for me in making this recipe - first SMS, first meringue, first time browning butter. I did take a picture of the first meringue as proof :-)
The cake itself is great. It definitely is a little labor intensive... Maybe something best kept for birthdays and other such special occasions. Nevertheless, my father, who typically doesn't like nuts in his desserts, was using a spatula to clean out the batter bowl. While the recipe is involved, I didn't run into any major problems. I did have some trouble with the sugar-mixture crystallizing into hard pieces when I was making the marmalade, but I later realized that the orange juice that I was adding was cold. Problem solved and the marmalade was great. There were some reports of it being too sweet. I did loose quite a bit of sugar in these "hard pieces," so I must have accidentally stumbled upon the right ratio. We really enjoyed the marmalade filling. It was probably our favorite part.
I did bake the cake in a 9x13 pan and then cut it in half to assemble making only 2 layers instead of the 4 called for in the recipe mostly due to the size of the pan I used.
The burnt orange buttercream was just okay. With the amount of butter called for in the recipe, it seemed to be most of what we tasted. The orange flavor was lost. It may have been better to swap the vanilla for orange extract to give the orange flavor a little bit more oomph. Overall, we were more than satisfied with my first SMS and look forward to many more great weeks. Stop by the other SMS blogs and see how their cakes turned out!