This cake is so good I made it twice in the space of a few hours. Never mind that this was because I forgot the baking powder the first time round and the cake came out of the tin beautifully golden but frisbee flat. My point is, I saw the error, weighed it up, and decided it was hardly any trouble to do it all again*. About an hour later, I had a perfectly risen cake, cooled, iced and ready to go. There were so few ingredients, I didn't even consult the recipe the second time, just made a mental note not to make the same mistake twice. This is a sweet, simple citrus cake made more sophisticated by its star ingredient: ruby grapefruit. Its juice and zest give a gorgeous warmth to the colour and a satisfyingly sour tang to the otherwise sweet crumb of the cake. A couple of days later, I packed some leftover slices for a weekend walk through bushland hugging the harbour. Surrounded by green, with blue skies, bluer water, and ruby grapefruit cake eaten outdoors with a view of it all, Sydney winter's sometimes not too bad.
* Lest you wonder what I did with the first cake, which still tasted great despite its density - I broke it up into big pieces and stashed it in the freezer. I couldn't bear to throw it out and figure I can use it to make trifle sometime. Buried under curd and cream, no-one's to know I forgot the baking powder.
Ruby grapefruit tea cake
Adapted from a recipe by SBS Food
You could easily use pink grapefruit or regular grapefruit in place of ruby if need be.
125g butter, at room temperature
¾ cup (165g) caster (superfine) sugar
zest of 1 ruby grapefruit
1 ½ cups (225g) self-raising flour (or plain flour with three teaspoons baking powder)
¾ cup (180ml) ruby grapefruit juice
2 cups (320g) pure icing sugar, sifted
¼ cup (60ml) grapefruit juice, warmed
1 teaspoon butter, melted
grapefruit zest, to decorate
Preheat oven to 190°C. Grease and line a 20cm ring tin.
Beat butter and sugar until pale and creamy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add grapefruit zest. Fold through flour and grapefruit juice alternately, beginning and ending with flour.
Pour into prepared tin. Bake for 30-35 minutes, until a skewer inserted comes out clean.
Cool in pan for 5 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely.
To make icing, mix together all ingredients until smooth. Pour over cake. Top with grapefruit zest to serve.