• Jackie Brubaker

Reluctant Housewife: Olive Oil Cake



I love Italy. And, I also love Italian food, which this recipe may or may not be. It involves a lot of olive oil in a cake, which may or may not be something people ever use in place of butter or vegetable oil. But, it sounded exotic and super decadent and I knew I had to try it. That and after taunting people about it at my work for about a month that I would bring it in it was only cruel that I hadn't.

This is definitely not your wham, bam, thank you ma'am easy kind of cake. It's not the most difficult, but it is one you'll want to pay attention to the recipe and directions and make sure to take your time with. It requires your full concentration. But, it's worth it. Everyone who has had this cake can't stop eating its fluffy, olive oil insides. It's perfect with a lovely glass of chardonnay or a light tea. It's a day or evening kind of cake, perfect for any occasion. The taste of olive oil really is the main flavor and it's simply glorious.

Watch the Reluctant Housewife episode here and grab the recipe below!

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Reluctant Housewife


Olive Oil Cake

  • 1¼ cups plus 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil; plus more for pan

  • 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar; plus more

  • 2 cups cake flour

  • ⅓ cup almond flour or meal or fine-grind cornmeal

  • 2 teaspoons baking powder

  • ½ teaspoon baking soda

  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt

  • 3 tablespoons amaretto, honey Jack Daniels, sweet vermouth, or other liqueur

  • 1 tablespoon finely grated lemon zest

  • 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

  • 3 large eggs

  • Preheat oven to 400°. Drizzle bottom and sides of pan with oil and use your fingers to coat. Line bottom with a round of parchment paper and smooth to eliminate air bubbles; coat parchment with more oil. Generously sprinkle pan with sugar.

  • Whisk cake flour, almond flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl to combine and eliminate any lumps.

  • Stir together whiskey, lemon juice, and vanilla in a small bowl.

  • Using an electric mixer on high speed (use whisk attachment if working with a stand mixer), beat eggs, lemon zest, and 1 cup plus 2 Tbsp. sugar in a large bowl until mixture is very light, thick, pale, and falls off the whisk or beaters in a slowly dissolving ribbon, about 3 minutes if using a stand mixer and about 5 minutes if using a hand mixer.

  • With mixer still on high speed, gradually stream in 1¼ cups oil and beat until incorporated and mixture is even thicker. Reduce mixer speed to low and add dry ingredients in 3 additions, alternating with whiskey mixture in 2 additions, beginning and ending with dry ingredients. Fold batter several times with a large rubber spatula, making sure to scrape the bottom and sides of bowl. Scrape batter into prepared pan, smooth top, and sprinkle with more sugar.

  • Place cake in oven and immediately reduce oven temperature to 350°. Bake until top is golden brown, center is firm to the touch, and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, 40–50 minutes. Transfer pan to a wire rack and let cake cool in pan 15 minutes.

  • Poke holes all over top of cake with a toothpick and drizzle with olive oil.

  • For the best flavor and texture, wrap cake in plastic and let sit at room temperature at least a day before serving. Enjoy!

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