Olive Oil Cake Experiment

clementine cake4

As you know by now, I am in love with olive oil cakes.
I may never bake with butter again. Well, maybe that's a bit extreme, but there is something so good about a cake baked with olive oil.

We recently dined at Danny Meyer's newest NYC restaurant called Maialino, which means "Little Pig" in Italian.
It's a fabulous Roman Trattoria where pork is 90% of the menu.
I felt like a "little pig" when I left.

For dessert, I ordered the orange olive oil cake, and after the first bite I almost fell off my chair.
It was so moist, delicious and fragrant. I had to have the recipe.

I asked our server how much oil was in this cake? Mine never come out this moist.
She was nice enough to come back with the recipe partially written out for me on a torn piece of note paper.

Telling me there were a little under 2 cups of pricey Ligurian olive oil in one 10" cake! along with fresh squeezed orange juice and Grand Marnier!!!!
That's a pricey cake to bake. The bottle of olive oil costs $25, not to even mention the bottle of Grand Marnier.

I decided to try the recipe using half of the oil, and changing some things around.
I used the last of my winter clementines, and tried it in a loaf pan.

It was a hit! Moist, citrusy and the perfect olive oil cake. The best I have made to this date. Yay!

This is best made the day before and eaten the next day (hard to do, I know).

Stacey's Clementine Olive Oil Cake:

1 1/2 cups flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
pinch of salt
2 eggs
1 1/4 cups of sugar
3/4 cup of mild Italian olive oil (I use Colavita extra virgin)
2/3 cup of fresh squeezed juice from 3 small peeled clementines (or 2 navel oranges)
zest of a clementine or orange

Grease a loaf pan and line with parchment paper to make for easy removal.

Mix flour with baking soda, powder and salt. Set aside.

In a food processor, whiz the peeled fruit to make 2/3 cup of fresh pulpy juice.
Save the peel for the zest.

Mix your eggs with sugar and oil until light in color.
Add fresh squeezed juice and zest.

Slowly mix in your dry ingredients into the oil mixture.

Pour into the prepared loaf pan and bake at 375F for 50-55 minutes.
Let rest in the pan for about 20 minutes before cooling on a rack.

This is a different animal when eaten the next day. Let it rest.
It will be so worth it!


Ciao Chow Linda said…
I'd say your experiment was a raging success. I want to make this cake!
Jen_from_NJ said…
Now that's my idea of a cake! I think waiting until the next day to eat it will be the hard part!
Claudia said…
I adore olive oil cakes. The clementimes are sitting on my table.... it's time to use them up.
Kim said…
I haven't had an olive oil cake before, but I have really been wanting to make one. This looks delicious Stacey!
Bob said…
I've never had an olive oil cake, but you make it sound (and look) so good I might just have to make one this weekend!
SarahB said…
I love the addition of clementines!! I'll bet it was fantastic. I want some with my coffee!!
MaryMoh said…
I love this cake....with olive oil and beautiful orange flavour...mmm. Thanks for sharing.
Foodiewife said…
I am having multiple personality disorder. I have a bag of blood oranges. First, it was to become part of a citrus salad. Then, I thought sherbet. Now this. Other than yogurt, olive oil is awesome in cakes. What to do? I'm bookmarking it, since I trust you when you rave about something.
Pssst... 70 degrees today. Come West!
Dana said…
My only attempt at an olive oil cake did not go well. Greasy and yucky. Clearly, I did not use good enough olive oil! I love the look of that loaf.
A lovely cake! A wonderful combination!


Wow, I can't believe they gave you the recipe ! Score! I'll have to try this - and Maialino, the next time I'm in NYC!
Lidia said…
I'm italian, sure I love olive oil cake!! And your looks very good!!! Ciao from Rome!!
Dewi said…
Stacey, this is truly inspiring. Seems like you successfully made your own version.
Lori Lynn said…
Wow. wow. wow.
You might get me to bake with this one!
Anonymous said…
Hi Stacey! Thank you so much for this recipe; it looks wonderful. I am usually asked to bring a dessert to my cousin's Easter dinner and this will be perfect. Anna from Cedar Knolls
Julie said…
Looks so yummy! I bet my son would love this, he's crazy for clementines.
Michele said…
This sounds fantastic. I've seen chef's make them on tv and i've seen them in cookbooks but never tasted one. I'm going to give it a try! Not sure about that pricey oil though! lol
Terry said…
i like how you changed the recipe a bit to include less oil! I'm going to try this recipe this week! I can't wait!
kat said…
I had a fantastic lemon olive oil cake last night, I might have to use your recipe to try to copy it
Susan said…
When you say a mild olive oil, does that mean Extra Virgin, or regular olive oil?
Stacey Snacks said…

A mild olive oil is anything that does not have a strong flavor or smell, like pricey Sicilian extra virgin oils usually do.

I use Colavita Extra Virgin for this cake, and for my everyday cooking, it's not expensive and doesn't over power the lovely taste of the cake. (Bertoli regular olive oil is fine too, it's very mild).

I save my more flavorful olive oils for salad dressings or dipping bread.

The JR said…
Another fantastic cake.
Tim said…
I made this last night and it turned out looking JUST like yours. That never happens to me. I am following your advice and not having any until the next day which will be today at lunch. I'll post the results then.
Thanks for the great idea.
Tim said…
I'm back. The cake was sublime. So moist, sweet without being over powering. Wonderful flavor. This one gets top marks!
Unknown said…
Baked this cake three times since you posted it.. love it!!
Susan said…
This kind of cake is so delicious. Baking with olive oil makes for a wonderfully moist cake and it only gets better as it sits!
My recipe uses a bundt pan,but so similar to yours.