Olive Oil Cake

Greetings! This year for my birthday, I made my favorite olive oil cake. I absolutely love this olive oil cake recipe, as it is sweet,but not too sweet, perfectly dense and moist. We usually eat it for breakfast with a dollop of sour cream and a nice strong espresso. You can certainly devour it with some champagne and fruit or any other way you prefer. I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as we do! Bon appétit! 

Olive Oil Cake Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 3/4 cups sugar (I used raw turbinado sugar)
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 1/3 cups good quality extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 1/4 cups whole milk
  • 3 large fresh eggs
  • Zest of a whole fresh orange
  • 1/4 cup fresh orange juice
  • 1/4 cup Grand Marnier ( You can also substitute Benedictine or Rum)

Directions:

1. Heat the oven to 350° F. Butter and flour a 9-inch springform cake pan that is at least 2 inches deep (If your cake pan is less than 2 inches deep, divide between 2 pans and start checking for doneness at 30 minutes).

2. In a bowl, whisk the flour, sugar, salt, baking soda and powder. In another bowl, whisk the olive oil, milk, eggs, orange zest and juice, and Grand Marnier. Add the dry ingredients; whisk until just combined.

3. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 1 hour, until the top is golden and a cake tester comes out clean. Transfer the cake to a rack and let cool for 30 minutes.

4. Optional: Sprinkle 2 tbsp of fresh orange juice and 1 tbsp of sugar uniformly over the cake.

5. Run a knife around the edge of the pan, invert the cake onto the rack and let cool completely, 2 hours.

6. Serve warm or cold with some sour cream or crème fraiche, fresh fruit, roasted fruit, fruit compote or jam.

Olive Oil Cake

Beef Bourguignon, My Way

Bonjour! Lately, we are drinking and enjoying many Italian and French wines and it is inspiring me to cook with wine and pair wine and food. I have wanted to make Beef Bourguignon for a while, so when we tasted a beautiful Bourgogne Pinot Noir I decided it was the perfect wine to use in Beef Bourguignon. It was a cold Saturday and I did not have every item I needed to make this dish, but I was determined to make it work. Please excuse me for not sticking to the traditional method, but I do plan to make it again using the complete traditional ingredients. Continue reading “Beef Bourguignon, My Way”

Spicy Israeli Couscous Mushroom Pilaf with Shrimp

I’ve come to embrace how structural I am. I love planning everything in advance. I do need to be more spontaneous and I’m working on that, but I do think being organized and planning ahead really helps get your life in order and maximizes what little time we have after working hours. I love planning everything in advance from seasonal house chores to weeknight meals. Usually on weeknights we have specific meal themes. For example, Mondays are usually vegetarian nights, Tuesdays are usually taco nights or something Tex-Mex, Wednesdays are usually seafood nights and Thursdays are either clean out the refrigerator and put something unique together or leftover nights. Fridays are generally reserved for takeout or eating out, and of course weekends are usually for more time consuming culinary meals. Of course, this is not set in stone and there are times we just change things around or do something completely different.
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Samosas

The other day we felt like having finger food and decided to make samosas for the first time. I’ve had samosas at several Indian restaurants and I love how they are crispy on the outside and warm, spicy and moist on the inside. It is always such a joy to take that first bite and savor it and then devour the whole thing in matter of seconds because it just tastes so great. One of my sister in-laws and her husband gave us an Indian cookbook, Complete Indian Cooking, for a wedding gift and I have used it many times and tried new recipes. I was glancing at it again the other day and found a samosa recipe. I modified it slightly, but I think the samosas came out nicely. I made two kinds, Potato & Pea Samosas and Lamb & Pea Samosas. I also decided to bake them instead of frying them, and not because I wanted them healthier, I just didn’t want to deal with the frying mess that day as after all it was my lazy day. We each ended up having four samosas that day because they were so tasty, fresh and crisp and they went beautifully with our quick Mint-Coconut Yogurt Chutney (recipe below). Here is the recipe for our samosas and hope you enjoy!

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