*This Meyer Lemon Olive Oil Cake is gluten & refined sugar free.
The first time I heard of an olive oil cake I thought it must have been created because the inventor had clearly run out of a more mild oil – like canola or vegetable. I mean, who would use olive oil for a cake, right?
A year or so ago, when I decided to ditch vegetable oils, I came across this cake again. And since I needed another option for oils in cakes besides coconut, I decided to give it a go.
Smart choice. This cake has become my all time favorite. I kid you not. I absolutely adore this cake and make it every few months (for someone who is always trying and developing new recipes, this is a feat). Not only is it the most incredibly moist cake you will ever try, but the olive oil gives it a taste and feeling of pure luxury
In the summer time I serve this cake with a scoop of homemade mascarpone ice cream on top, along with fresh sliced strawberries and a drizzle of balsamic reduction. That is about as good as things get and you can bet your buns that I’ll post that recipe come warmer weather (and strawberries that don’t cost you your first born child per pint).
If you want a little taste of this flavor combo, you could always whip up THIS ice cream. That ought to tie y’all over for a little while 😉
Since we’re sitting smack dab in the middle of winter I thought I’d make a seasonally appropriate version of my favorite cake. This one boasts a hint of sweet citrus from Meyer Lemons.
I gave the cake three doses of lemon: one from the zest of the Meyer Lemons, one from the juice, and a bit of lemon liqueur to bump up the flavor.
Instead of frosting, I topped the cake with a batch of super fresh homemade ricotta cheese. The cheese goes so well with the bold olive oil flavor and drizzling the top with honey adds in a simple sweetness that lets the olive oil and ricotta take center stage (in a very dessert-y way, of course).
One important thing to note about baking this cake: You’ll need to make sure that your springform pan has high sides. I bake mine in a 9 inch springform that has 3 inch high sides and the cake comes almost to the top when baked. If your pan is not that tall, you may want to use a 10 inch springform, instead.
Also, if you want the top of your cake to be perfectly level and not rounded, I would use a Bake Even
strip. I always use them(but make my own with old dish towels) when I make this cake and it makes the cake slices beautiful and even. It’s also nice when piling toppings on this cake so that they stay balanced on top.
A FEW NOTES:
*I know everyone doesn’t have a bottle of lemon liqueur lying around in their pantries. While I would really recommend purchasing one (for baking – I don’t drink but I have a cupboard full of liqueurs for such purposes), if you don’t have any you could use a few drops of food grade lemon oil or a little lemon extract instead.
*Use homemade ricotta for this cake. It makes all the difference in the world, I promise you! And it’s not difficult to make at all. It literally takes 5 minutes to throw together. I have a recipe HERE that always turns out perfectly. Make it after you remove the cake from the oven and both the cake and cheese should be ready to serve at the same time.
*This cake is gluten free, but if it’s gluten content doesn’t matter to you, sub whole wheat flour in, instead (in equal amounts).
*If you are a little timid about making an olive oil cake, use plain olive oil, or even a light tasting version. If you are an olive oil fanatic, use extra virgin, you’ll love the strong flavor.
P.S. Devin, if you’re reading this and decide that you are going to make me a birthday cake this year, I’ll take this one. Please and thank you. xo
RECIPE FOR FRESH RICOTTA (link isn’t working in recipe, sorry!)
- 2¼ cups Gluten Free Oat Flour
- ½ cup Coconut Palm Sugar
- 1½ tespoons Sea Salt
- ½ teaspoon Baking Soda
- ½ teaspoon Baking Powder
- 1¼ cup Olive Oil
- 1 cup Coconut Milk
- ⅔ cup Honey
- 3 Eggs
- zest of 2 Meyer Lemons
- ¼ cup Fresh Meyer Lemon Juice
- ¼ cup Lemon Liqueur (limoncello or other)
- 1 recipe Fresh Ricotta
- Honey, to drizzle on top
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9" springform pan and line the bottom with parchment paper. A deep pan with 3 inch sides is best. If your sides are not 3" high, consider baking this in a 10" springform pan.
- In a mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, coconut palm sugar, sea salt, baking soda and baking powder.
- In another large mixing bowl, whisk together the olive oil, coconut milk, honey, eggs, lemon zest, lemon juice, and lemon liqueur until well combined. Add the dry ingredients to the bowl and whisk together until just combined and smooth.
- Pour the batter into the prepared pan. You can line the pan with bake even strips for a perfectly flat top, if you like, but it is not necessary. Bake in the preheated oven for 1 hour, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Remove and let cool for 30 minutes.
- Remove sides of pan and parchment paper and place cake on a stand or serving platter.
- Top with freshly made ricotta cheese (best when still warm - about 10 minutes after making) and a generous drizzle of honey.
- Serve warm.
- *If you do not use all of the cake, the ricotta will need to be stored in an airtight container in the fridge. The cake needs to be stored at room temperature because of the olive oil inside of it (olive oil becomes somewhat solid when chilled and would alter the texture of the cake).
- To avoid having to remove the ricotta from the top of the cake to store, you could simply top the cake with the cheese on a slice by slice basis.
Cake recipe adapted from Food 52