Sumo Citrus Cake with Orange-Ginger Jam Buttercream

Sumo Citrus Cake with

Orange-Ginger Jam Buttercream

Sumo Citrus is a new hybrid orange that's very large, very sweet and very easy to peel. It is the new orange darling in the produce isle. Have you seen them in the stores yet? We bought some recently and I was inspired to try a new flavor for a birthday cake for my mother. It was really tasty!

As I was planning the icing, I found that I had one of those special little jam jars that my daughter had given me. The flavor was Orange Ginger. I thought, "Wow! This is something I can really work with!"

I decided on a buttercream icing and added in the jam for flavor. My husband and I were both so surprised at how much orange flavor came through in this truly buttery cake! It was quite decadent and a small piece was all we really needed to be satisfied.

None of us really need to eat cake so I thought I'd compromise and make just a single layer cake. I also left the sides "naked" and opted for a smaller star shaped piping tip hoping it would keep the top layer of buttercream from becoming too deep.

This is a naked Sumo Citrus after I had zested it for the cake batter.

I also used the juice of half the Sumo in the batter. Look at how thin the pith is on this orange. That's what makes it so easy to peel and very nice to work with in general. It's super juicy!

While I mixed the cake batter, I let a stick of butter come to room temperature to make the Orange Ginger Buttercream Icing. You can see flecks of zest in the batter.

After the cake was in the oven, I whipped the butter then added in the rest of the ingredients including my cute little jar of Orange Ginger Jam. Click on the images below for more details.

I start piping the icing onto the cake by making a small star in the center of the cake and then proceed counter clockwise (perhaps because I'm right handed) making rosettes around the star in concentric circles until I reach the outer edge. Then I go back and fill in any gaps with small star shapes. Try changing the color of your icing for the little star flowers and it will really give this cake decoration more pop!

To make the rosette, touch the tip of the piping star to the cake, squeeze gently but firmly as you draw a small circle with it going around twice. Release your pressure on the icing and lift to complete the rosette.

The blue pearls accentuate the center of a small star flowers. The smaller white pearls and sugar crystals accentuate the rosettes randomly like drops of dew. At least that's what I imagined I was going for.

Tip: I froze the cake for an hour before applying the crumb coat. That's a fancy name for a thin layer of icing that protects the decorative outer layer of icing from getting mussed up by little floating bits of cake crumbs.

Tip: I also chilled the buttercream after I whipped it together so it would be firmer to pipe the rosettes. If the buttercream starts getting too soft from the warmth of your hand as you pipe the decorative layer on top, stop and chill the filled piping bag in the refrigerator for 15 minutes before continuing.

I stored the cake in the refrigerator covered with plastic wrap to keep it moist and this is how we discovered that this cake really needed to be brought to room temperature fully before eating it to get the best experience.

The crumb or texture seemed to be tight and more dry until fully warmed. Then the buttery goodness became soft and melting and oh so rich!

If you like orange you should give this delightfully citrus cake a try. It's yummy!

Happy Baking!


Sumo Citrus Cake with

Orange-Ginger Jam Buttercream


for the cake

1 and ½ cups all-purpose flour (spooned & leveled)

1 and ½ teaspoons baking powder

½ teaspoon salt

½ cup unsalted butter, softened

1 cup granulated sugar

2 large eggs

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

2 tablespoons lemon zest (about 2 medium lemons)

½ cup whole milk

¼ cup sour cream

for the Buttercream

1 cup unsalted butter, softened

3 and ½ cups powdered sugar

1 tablespoon heavy cream

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

⅓ cup Orange Ginger Jam (or similar)

a pinch of salt

food coloring as desired


Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a cake pan with parchment paper and set aside.

In a large mixing bowl, mix together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, or in a large mixing bowl using a hand-held mixer, beat the butter and granulated sugar together until light and fluffy. Mix in each egg one at a time, then the vanilla extract, making sure to mix well after each ingredient. Add in the sumo citrus juice and zest, mix until well combined, then mix in the milk and sour cream until fully combined.

Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix until just combined, making sure not to over mix the batter. Use a rubber spatula or spoon to turn the batter, scrape the bottom of the mixing bowl to make sure everything is well combined.

Pour the batter into the cake pan and bake at 350°F for 30 - 40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean and the top springs back when lightly touched.

Remove from the oven, then carefully remove the cake from the pan and transfer to a wire rack to cool.

To make the buttercream icing

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, or in a large mixing bowl using a hand-held mixer, beat the butter until smooth. Mix in the powdered sugar, heavy cream, and vanilla extract until well combined. Add in the Orange Ginger preserves (or jam), food coloring and salt and continue mixing until fully and combined.

Frost the cooled cake as desired. Freeze the cake for at least one hour for best results.

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Copywrite © 2019 by Melisa Smith