Basil & Orange Loaf Cake

Basil & orange loaf cake

One of the greatest culinary joys of last year was discovering the combination of basil and lemon in something sweet. And discoveries happen by endlessly scouring the internet with the hope that the recipe will also have ingredients that are within one’s reach. This was one such.:)
And since then cakes and muffins have been made regularly with this combination. With a bit of twist here and there. All ‘tasters’ have only had good things to say..

But at one point I stopped. I can’t remember exactly why. Maybe the leaves on my plants couldn’t keep up the pace or the eaters must have been satiated!! But now with oranges in season, and my basil plants still looking good, I couldn’t resist baking this orange and basil loaf cake today.


  • 100 grams butter, softened + extra for greasing the baking pan
  • 1 cup caster sugar
  • 3 eggs, beaten
  • 3 tablespoons orange juice
  • 1 tablespoon orange zest
  • 3 tablespoons plain yoghurt
  • 1 heaped tablespoon finely chopped basil leaves
  • 11/2 cups all-purpose flour, sieved with…
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • Cream the sugar and butter till light and fluffy.
  • Add the eggs one by one and mix till fully incorporated.
  • Add the orange juice and the yoghurt.
  • Add the flour and baking powder mixture and mix till the batter comes together.
  • Add the orange zest and chopped basil leaves and gently mix.
  • Transfer to the prepared baking pan.
  • Bake in a preheated oven at 180C for about 40 minutes or till a skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean.
  • If the top browns fast, cover the surface with a piece of foil till the baking is done.
  • Remove the cake and cool on a wire rack.
  • Slice when still warm. Goes well with tea or coffee.

Below are pictures of basil and lemon cakes I had made earlier

Basil & lemon cake

The top has a very light glaze of icing sugar and lemon juice. And the final touch is a scattering of candied lemon rind. And I was quite happy with the way it turned out.

And here’s one made with gondhoraj lebu. Revered by Bengalis, the name ‘gondhoraj’ translates to ‘King of Aroma’. And rightly so. The oblong limes which grow only in the eastern part of our country have a thick rind and not much of juice but the taste and fragrance is enough to send you to citrus heaven. Even the leaves are widely used to enhance the flavours of food.
For the final touches, I scattered some freshly-made candied zest on the top. The glaze was a mix of icing sugar and gondhoraj lebu juice.

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