May is Fat Liberation Month, and Feedists for Fat Liberation is celebrating by sharing favorite recipes and the liberatory stories that connect us to our culinary creations. We hope you enjoy Laura’s Blood Orange Raspberry Cake recipe and contemplate the way her experience parallels the work she’s doing to unite feedism and fat liberation.

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Laura’s Blood Orange Raspberry Cake

Image: A 4 tiered cake is resting on a bright red cake plate. The cake layers are all white. There is a slice cut from the cake so you can see inside. There is a layer of cake, and then a layer of pink frosting and raspberries, then another layer of cake and a layer of orange curd, a layer of cake, and then a layer of pink icing and raspberries, followed by the final top layer of cake. The cake is covered in a layer of white icing and is topped with several raspberries. In the background is a plain grey wall.

The recipe I am sharing is a recipe for a blood orange raspberry cake. I chose this recipe because I made this cake for FFL’s third “Unlearning Cycles of Shame” event. This was one of the first ways FFL introduced ourselves to the broader feedist community. When I think about this cake, I think of that event and all of the wonderful people I have since come to call friends and co-conspirators. This cake also reminds me of the broader work we are trying to achieve with FFL.

To start out, I remember looking at this recipe and thinking it would only take a few hours, only to still find myself in the kitchen six hours later. I remember when I was first told about the idea of starting a group of likeminded, intersectional feedists dedicated to integrating fat liberation, thinking that if we clearly laid out what we hoped to achieve, we could accomplish this in a few years. Now that we are six months into organizing as FFL, I recognize that this work may take a lifetime. However, it is worth it (much like how the 6 hours in the kitchen was worth it for this cake)!

The cakes stuck to the pan despite the fact that I lined and greased my cake tins, the buttercream broke, and my feet were tired from standing for so long. In looking back on this, I realize that this serves as a metaphor for the work we are all dedicated to. Things did not go to plan, and at the time, it felt like all of the work I had previously done had gone to waste. But a little patience, elbow grease, and some rest allowed me to create an all-around delicious and beautiful cake, much like how patience, elbow grease, and rest will serve us all well in integrating feedism and fat liberation. Community will nourish us as we work to dismantle systems of harm and oppression that affect us all. As feedists, we know that we can have our cake and eat it too, and that is exactly what we will achieve through FFL.


Cake Layers
Vegetable shortening, for greasing pans
1 c. whole milk, room temperature
3/4 c. egg whites, room temperature
2 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
1 T orange zest
2 1/4 c. flour
1 3/4 c. granulated sugar
4 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. fine sea salt
6 oz. unsalted butter, softened

1 c. unsalted butter, softened
5 c. confectioners’ sugar
1 T meringue powder
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 tsp. fresh blood orange juice
1/4 tsp. fine sea salt
1/4 c. whole milk

Raspberry Filling
2 T raspberry jam
1 pint fresh raspberries

Blood Orange Filling
3/4 c. granulated sugar
1 1/2 T cornstarch
1 T blood orange zest
1/2 c. fresh blood orange juice
1/4 tsp. fine sea salt
6 T unsalted butter, softened
4 large egg yolks


Preparing the Cake Layers

Step 1: Preheat the oven to 350°F. Grease two 8-inch round cake pans with vegetable shortening. Line each pan with parchment and grease the parchment with vegetable shortening.

Step 2: In a small mixing bowl, combine the milk, egg whites, vanilla, and orange zest. In the bowl of a stand mixer with a paddle attachment, mix the flour sugar, baking powder, and sea salt at low speed. Add the butter and continue to mix at low speed until the mixture has a sandy appearance.

Step 3: Add the milk mixture in a slow, steady stream and beat for 1 1/2 minutes at medium speed. After scraping the sides of the bowl, beat for an additional 30 seconds.

Step 4: Divide the batter evenly between the prepared pans. Bake 28 to 31 minutes, until the cake springs back when lightly touched in the center or a wooden toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Remove from oven and let cool in pans on wire racks for 5 minutes. Turn the cakes out of the pans and leave on wire racks until completely cool.

Making the Frosting

Step 5: In a stand mixer with a whisk attachment, whip butter at medium speed for 5 minutes, or until light and creamy.

Step 6: Add the sugar, one cup at a time, whipping on low speed until fully combined. Add meringue powder and whip until combined.

Step 7: Add the vanilla, orange juice, salt, and milk. Whip on medium speed for 8-10 minutes, or until frosting is light and fluffy.

Making the Raspberry Filling

Step 8: Measure out 1 1/2 cups of the frosting. Stir in the raspberry jam. Set aside.

Making the Blood Orange Filling

Step 9: In a small mixing bowl, lightly whisk the egg yolks. Set aside.

Step 10: Combine the sugar and cornstarch in a small saucepan. Stir in the orange zest, orange juice, and salt. Add the butter and bring the mixture to a boil over medium heat. Stir constantly for 1 minute.

Step 11: Temper the eggs by pouring a small amount of the hot mixture into the egg yolks while whisking vigorously. Add the tempered egg mixture into the saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until thick. Transfer to a small mixing bowl and cover the surface with plastic wrap. Refrigerate until cold.

Assembling the Cake

Step 12: Divide each cake layer into two by slicing horizontally. Put a dollop of frosting in the center or a serving plate, then place one layer of the cake, cut side down. Spread half of the raspberry filling on the layer, then add 1/3 of the fresh raspberries.

Step 13: Place the second layer, cut side up, on the first layer. Pipe frosting in a circle around the edge of the layer. Fill in the circle with the blood orange filling.

Step 14: Place the third layer, cut side up, on the second layer. Spread the remaining raspberry filling on the layer, then add 1/3 of the fresh raspberries.

Step 15: Place the final layer, cut side up, on the third layer. Use the remaining frosting to cover the top and sides of the cake. Garnish with the remaining fresh strawberries.