Orange Olive Oil Cake

Orange & Olive Oil Cake
Recipe adapted from David Leite 

Last month I went to an event planned by Flavor Your Life  a campaign supported by Italy and the European Union  in support of extra virgin olive oil. The evening was filled with beautiful food and a lot of information about olive oil and how to make sure you're getting the best product. I spent a lot of time on their website, exploring their recipes and learning about extra virgin olive oil. There is a lot to learn!

"The campaign ‘Olive oil and olives – European quality’, promoted by the European Commission & the country of Italy and realized by Unaprol was launched to promote awareness and the consumption of European high quality extra virgin olive oil and olives, in partner countries, through the diffusion of appropriate information about the quality of the product, its organoleptic characteristics, its usage in cooking, traceability and European quality acknowledgments (Bio, DOP and IGP)."

This organization believes you should be educated and vigilant on the type and quality of olive oil you use. Make sure that the product is authentic with the proper designation or you run the risk of it not being pure olive oil. A little education can make the difference between using a quality product or an inferior one. Buyer beware.

We heard from two speakers that night. First was Robert Beauchemin, an olive oil expert who educated us on what to look for to make sure we get pure olive oil. Next was tonight's chef, Marcus Monteiro, the executive chef for Brassaii. Chef Marcus prepared all beautiful appetizers and delicious desserts for this evening using olive oil.

My favourite olive oils come from Greece, Italy and Portugal. I trust my suppliers and I also trust my taste buds. I use olive oil on a daily basis in my cooking so quality is important to me. I also use olive oil in my baking! It is a wonderful substitute for butter in baking and imparts a subtle but delicious taste. My favourite olive oil cake is this orange cake that I made for my recent Portuguese Supper Club. It was well received and I had many requests for the recipe. I serve this cake with an Orange & Honey Syrup but it is lovely on its own with just a dollop of freshly whipped cream. Try to find a fruitier tasting olive oil rather than a peppery one. I used a Cretan olive oil from Nisos Importing.


4 to 5 large navel oranges
1 lemon
3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/4 teaspoons salt
5 large eggs
3 cups granulated sugar
1 1/2 cups fruity extra virgin olive oil
Confectioners’ sugar, for sprinkling


1. Position a rack in the middle of the oven, remove any racks above, and crank up the heat to 350°F (175°C). Butter and flour a 12-cup Bundt and set aside.

2. Finely grate the zest of 3 of the oranges, then squeeze 4 of them. You should have 1 1/2 cups of juice; if not, squeeze the 5th orange. Also finely grate the zest of one lemon. Set aside.

3. Whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl and set aside.

4. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, or with a handheld mixer in a large bowl, beat the eggs on medium-high speed until well-combined, about 1 minute. Slowly pour in the granulated sugar and continue beating until thick and pale yellow, about 3 minutes. On low speed, alternate adding the flour mixture and oil, starting and ending with the flour, and beat until just a few wisps of flour remain. Pour in the orange juice, juice of 1/2 the lemon and zests and whirl for a few seconds to bring the batter together.

5. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake until a cake tester comes out with a few moist crumbs clinging to it, about 1 1/4 hours. If the top is browning too much as the cake bakes, cover lightly with foil. Transfer to a wire rack and cool for 15 minutes.

6. Turn the cake out onto the rack and cool completely, then place it in a covered cake stand and let it sit overnight. Just before serving, dust with powdered sugar. If you leave it for longer than overnight, keep the cake in the refrigerator.

1 comment:

amola-tesouras said...

Hi there! I'm from Portugal and I found your blog some time ago thanks to a recipe of Oysters a la Russe (I bought that book on the Titanic, by the way).

I hadn't baked in ages but I was fascinated by this recipe and tried it this weekend with some good Portuguese olive oil and organic oranges. It was delicious! I'd send a picture but my family devoured most of it already :D

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