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Orange and macadamia layer cake

When an occasion calls for a show-stopping cake, this one delivers like no other. Standing tall at four layers high, this exquisite creation blends the bright zesty flavour of fresh oranges with the irresistible crunch of macadamia pieces. Finished with a splash of Cointreau and candied orange peel, it’s a grown-up treat that leaves an impression long after the last slice has gone.
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Servings 8
Course Dessert
Perfect for Decadent Dessert
Skill level Confident


  • 280 g unsalted butter softened
  • 280 g golden caster sugar
  • 5 large eggs
  • 280 g self-raising flour sifted
  • 1 tsp baking powder sifted
  • 1 large orange zested
  • 1/2 cup unsalted macadamias finely chopped

Orange Liqueur Icing

  • 125 g unsalted butter softened
  • 350 g cream cheese
  • 250 g icing sugar sifted
  • 1 orange zested
  • 1 tbsp orange juice

Candied Orange Peel

  • 2 oranges
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 3/4 cup caster sugar

Assembly & Decoration

  • 2 tbsp Cointreau
  • 1 1/4 cups macadamias roasted, finely chopped


  • Preheat oven to 160°C fan forced. Grease and line 2 x 22cm round cake tins.
  • Place the butter and sugar in an electric mixer and beat on high until light and fluffy.
  • Gradually add the eggs, one at a time, beating well in between. Fold through the flour and baking powder. Divide between 2 bowls. Fold through the zest to half the mixture and macadamias to the other half.
  • Place the orange mixture in one lined cake tin and the macadamia mixture in the other and smooth the surfaces of each. Cook on the middle oven shelf for 30 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to cool in tins for 10 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack and cool completely.
  • To make the icing, beat the butter until very soft, add the cream cheese and the icing sugar and beat until smooth. Finally, add the orange zest and juice and beat until smooth.
  • To make the candied orange peel, cut the peel off the oranges in long strips using a vegetable peeler or a small sharp knife. Remove any white pith on the peel then slice into thin strips.
  • Combine the water and sugar in a medium sized saucepan over a medium heat and stir until the sugar dissolves. Add the orange peel and cook for about 15 minutes until the peel has softened and the syrup thickens. Remove the peel from the syrup and place onto non-stick baking paper to cool.
  • When the cakes have cooled, cut each in half horizontally. Place a layer of macadamia sponge on a plate and spread with icing. Place a layer of orange sponge on this and sprinkle with half the Cointreau. Spread more icing and continue layering, finishing with orange sponge. Spread the rest of the icing over the top and sides. Decorate the sides with the macadamias and decorate the top with strips of candied peel.


Calories: 1252kcalCarbohydrates: 123gProtein: 13gFat: 82gSaturated Fat: 39gPolyunsaturated Fat: 3gMonounsaturated Fat: 33gTrans Fat: 2gCholesterol: 255mgSodium: 240mgPotassium: 324mgFiber: 4gSugar: 92gVitamin A: 2092IUVitamin C: 23mgCalcium: 149mgIron: 2mg

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