Yay! Lemon cake Take 2 was a hit! This time around I chose to work from Chef Chloe’s Lemon Olive Oil Cake recipe since I had almost everything on hand and loved that the recipe lacked refined sugar – bonus!
I went in skeptical after my last lemon cake disaster and made sure to warn my friends not to count on this cake being the dessert at this weekend’s gathering…just in case. I told them to call it an experiment. Still, I was hopeful. So, I jumped in, zested the lemons and squeezed the juice and hoped for the best. And the best it was!!!
I tweaked the recipe – you know, because I can’t resist changing things up. I increased the recipe by half, except for the maple syrup because I’m going for something far less sweet than a typical American style cake. I was spoiled early on, visiting France at 18 and discovering pastries in which the first sensation upon biting into them was not the sweetness, but the butter and cream and dark chocolate. The sweetness was there, but it was an aside…and enhancer…not the be all end all. As it should be.
I also tweaked the water to lemon juice ratio to 50/50 from 75/25. I was going for solid lemony, not hint of lemon.
The cake popped perfectly out of the bundt pan with a golden crust. I prepared a simple glaze – more of a syrup – with lemon juice, confectioners sugar and culinary lavender and drizzled it on the cake. This is the kind of glaze that doesn’t really turn crusty or white – it will if you add more sugar – but it soaks into the cake and drips downs the sides and then gets sopped up by the soft cake bottom – perfect if you’re not a huge icing fan like me.
It looked great and it was sooooo hard to stop myself from cutting into it to see if it baked. Instead, I packed it up and off we went to the party.
When it was time, I sliced into it and was so happy to see that it was not raw! The texture was nice – almost rustic – in a good way. Not too airy and not too dense. Moist…not too sweet…and LEMONY! The syrup was sweet tart and gave the edges a nice kick with just a hint of lavender. I was in lemon cake heaven! No need for me to try other recipes – this is it for me. If you like a super lemony and not too sweet cake, this is it.
The best part? My 9 year old son LOVED it! He was so disappointed when it was gone (while my husband complained that he couldn’t taste the chocolate… he’s such a smart ass).
Lemon Lavender Olive Oil Cake
3 c. all-purpose flour
1.5 t. baking soda
1.5 t. baking powder
3/4 t. salt
3/4 c. extra virgin olive oil
3/4 c. maple syrup
3/4 c. water
3/4 c. lemon juice
2 T. lemon zest
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour your bundt pan.
Whisk together dry ingredients (flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt) in a large mixing bowl. In a separate bowl, whisk together remaining ingredients. Pour the wet mix into the dry and stir just until combined – don’t over mix.
Pour batter into greased and floured bundt pan (I use coconut oil to grease my pan). Use a silicon spatula to push the batter into the sides and tap the pan on the counter top a few times to be sure your design is filled.
Bake for 40 minutes until a tester inserted in the middle of the cake comes out clean. Cool cake 10 minutes then gently shake the pan to loosen the cake from the edges. Place your serving plate on top of the cake pan and turn it over to release the cake out of the pan. Let cool fully before glazing.
Lemon Lavender Glaze
1/8 c. lemon juice
1/4 +/- c. powdered sugar
1 t. Earth Balance buttery spread
1 tsp. culinary lavender
Crush the lavender with a mortal and pestle. Melt the Earth Balance then add in the lemon and powdered sugar. Whisk until no lumps remain. Add in the lavender and mix well. Taste and adjust the powdered sugar and lemon juice to your taste and texture preference. I made a syrup to drizzle over the cake – just shy of an all out glaze. Drizzle over cake and sprinkle with a pinch or two of un-crushed lavender after your cake is cool.