I have mastered science!! This may not be the moment you’ve all been waiting for, but I don’t care. This is it!! The very first cake recipe I developed on my own. It needed one little tweak from it’s first incarnation, but I’ve made it three times now and I’m pleased with the results. I never thought I would be able to make a cake on my own, but that was before I studied up on a little science and applied a little logic. Woot! …I wonder if the Noble committee will consider me this year?
1½ cups all-purpose flour
1½ teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon Kosher salt
three large eggs
1 cup sugar
½ teaspoon almond extract
¾ cup olive oil
juice of 1 lemon
small splash olive oil to grease the baking pan
measuring cups and spoons
small bowl (to sift dry goods into)
stand or hand mixer
large mixing bowl (if using a hand mixer)
spatula (to scrape the sides of the mixing bowl)
toothpicks (to check for doneness)
cooling rack (you can substitute a folded kitchen towel)
* I recommend using a glass loaf pan for this recipe. Glass takes longer to heat up, but it heats evenly and it maintains even heat as the oven cycles on and off. When baking in a glass pan, baking time is 5-15 minutes longer than if using a metal pan. You can substitute a metal loaf pan if that’s what you have on hand, but remember that the baking time will be much shorter.
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
2. Using a small splash of olive oil and a paper towel or napkin
to lightly grease your loaf pan.
3. Sift the flour, baking powder and salt together and set aside.
Depending on your sifter and your salt, the salt may not sift. If this happens,
just sprinkle the salt evenly over the sifted flour and baking soda.
3. Add olive oil and half of the flour mixture. Mix on low until combined;
scraping the sides of the bowl as needed. Do not over mix. The batter will
start to look a little funny, almost like custard.
4. Add the lemon juice and other half of the flour mixture and mix on
low until combined; scraping the sides of the bowl as needed. Do not over mix.
The batter will look very much like custard at this stage.
5. Bake at 350 degrees for approximately 50 minutes. The cake is done when
a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
6. Cool in the pan for 10 to 15 minutes. You do this because there is a good chance that your cake will break apart if you try to remove it from a hot pan.
7. Turn the cake out onto a cooling rack (or a folded kitchen towel)
to finish cooling and glaze if desired.
This may take a little patience. I usually run a table knife (some people call it a butter knife) along the edges of my glass pan to loosen the cake. Do not do this if you are using a non-stick pan because you could scratch the pan and ruin the non-stick finish. Do not allow the cake to finish cooling on a cutting board or a plate because condensation will build up under the cake and result in a soggy bottom.
Note: This recipe can be doubled to use in a bundt pan! If doing so, make sure you grease all of the nooks and crannies of the bundt pan well and lightly dust the pan with flour or you will not be able to coax the cake out of the pan without breaking it.