1. Preheat your oven to 180°C/Fan 160°C/Gas 4. Line a 450g loaf tin with baking paper. Set aside.
2. Make the cake: pop the softened butter and sugar in a large mixing bowl and beat with electric beaters or a stand mixer till pale and creamy. Finely grate the zest from 3 blood oranges into the bowl. Set the oranges to one side for later. Pick the leaves from the thyme sprigs, then roughly chop them. Add to the bowl and mix till evenly combined.
3. Crack the eggs into a jug and beat with the vanilla extract. With the beaters or mixer running, slowly trickle in the eggs, waiting until it is fully incorporated before adding any more. Scrape down the sides from time to time.
4. When the eggs are incorporated into the batter, add the ground almonds, flour and baking powder. Stir them into the batter by hand. Fold in the soured cream.
5. Pour the mix into your lined tin and smooth it flat with the back of a spoon. Bake for 40-45 mins till golden, firm and risen. Check it is cooked by inserting a skewer into the centre. It should come out clean, without any wet batter clinging to it.
6. While the cake is baking, make the syrup. Squeeze the juice from 2 of the zested blood oranges into a small pan and add 60g sugar. Pop on a low heat and simmer for 5 mins till the sugar is dissolved. Turn off the heat.
7. Remove the cake from the oven and poke holes all over the cake, using a skewer. Pour the syrup over the top. Leave the cake in the tin to cool and absorb the syrup.
8. When the cake has cooled, squeeze the juice from half the remaining orange into a bowl. Sift in the icing sugar and mix till smooth. Add more juice if the icing is too thick – the icing should be pourable.
9. Lift the cooled cake onto a serving plate. Spoon over the pink-hued icing, letting it drizzle down the sides. Decorate with orange slices, toasted flaked almonds and thyme leaves, if you wish.
10. Eat Me, Keep Me
This cake will keep in an airtight container for up to 3 days. Remove any orange slices before storing.