Am I the only one who can’t resist buying the boxes full of sweet, juicy clementines filling grocery store shelves this month? I’ve been pairing them for breakfast with greek yogurt and blueberries, and have been craving a way to incorporate them into a simple but decadent dessert. Enter this clementine-vanilla bean pound cake. It’s a triple-whammy of citrus: the zest, juice and segments all make an appearance, and its topped off with a clementine syrup that hardens to a satisfying crunch. Over the weekend we enjoyed thin slices with cups of tea in the afternoon…and served topped with whipped cream later on for dessert. Oh, and the flecks of vanilla bean dotting the batter? Heaven.
Take time to carefully segment the clementines…they get folded into the batter and add tons of sweetness. Here’s a great little tutorial to segmenting citrus fruit.
Clementine-Vanilla Bean Cake
*makes one 5×9″ loaf
- 10 clementines or tangerines
- 3/4 cup heavy cream
- 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
- 2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for pan
- 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 4 ounces (1 stick) unsalted butter, plus more for pan
- 1 1/4 cups sugar
- 2 vanilla beans, split and scraped, pod reserved for another use
- 2 large eggs
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter and flour a 5-by-9-inch loaf pan. Zest 4 clementines to yield 1 tablespoon zest. Juice 2 zested clementines and 6 remaining unzested clementines to yield 3/4 cup juice. Cut pith from 2 remaining zested clementines. Slice fruit along membranes to release segments into a bowl; discard membranes and any seeds.
Combine 1/4 cup clementine juice, the cream, and vanilla extract in a medium bowl. Whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in another bowl.
Beat zest, butter, 1 cup sugar, and the vanilla seeds with a mixer on medium speed until combined, about 4 minutes. With machine running, add eggs, 1 at a time. Reduce speed to low, and beat flour mixture into butter mixture in 3 additions, alternating with cream mixture, beginning and ending with flour.
Fold clementine segments into mixture, and pour into pan. Gently smooth top using an offset spatula.
Place pan on a rimmed baking sheet, and bake until a tester inserted into center comes out clean, 55 to 65 minutes. Meanwhile, bring remaining 1/2 cup clementine juice and 1/4 cup sugar to a boil in a small saucepan over medium heat. Reduce heat, and simmer for 3 minutes.
Remove bread from oven, poke top all over with a skewer, and brush with half the clementine syrup. Transfer pan to a wire rack; let cool for 15 minutes. Invert pan to remove bread. Let cool completely on wire rack, top side up.
Brush remaining clementine syrup onto sides and again on top of bread. (Bread can be stored, wrapped, at room temperature overnight or refrigerated for up to 5 days.)
*recipe from Martha Stewart Living