Tuesday, August 11, 2015

ABC - Apricot & Almond Olive Oil Cake

This month's recipe for the ABC bakers screams summer to me: Apricot & Olive Oil Cake. Shortly after I had picked this recipe for our August challenge, I ran into some beautiful organic apricots at Trader Joe's. Since they don't last very long, I decided to bake the cake early and not wait till August :o)

Yummy cake!

I've always wanted to make a cake with olive oil so this was my chance to do so. Since I only have extra virgin olive oil, I mixed it with canola oil  50-50, fearing that it would otherwise be too overpowering.

If you'd like to join the ABC bakers in their monthly baking adventures, please go to the ABC blog for more information.

The cake batter came together quickly; all by hand using two bowls and a manual whisk. I made some changes to the recipe which I will list out at the end of this blog post. For instance, I added more citrus zest to the batter and skipped the step for heating up the milk (laziness on my part with no bad side effects).

Super easy and quick cake batter. No mixer needed!

Should have quartered the apricots. Already started to sink.

Ready for the oven

Nice even rise

Slice of fruity and moist cake. Bon Appetit!

Final thoughts/tips:

  • Hubby loved this cake. It was moist and fruity with a hint of almond. He gave it a 9 out of 10 rating.
  • Some of my friends also had a chance to taste this cake and I received rave reviews from them on this one.
  • I too loved it. The cake was aromatic from the various citrus zest, moist and wonderfully fruity. The apricots were a somewhat sweet-and-sour which worked really well against the sweet cake. Definitely worth baking again (and again). It's quick and easy, no mixer required.
  • Next time I'll follow the recipe and actually quarter the apricots. I didn't pay attention to that detail and used halved apricots instead. They sank to the bottom of the cake which affected the cake's visual a little bit, but it more than made for up in taste.
  • Leftover cake was sliced and frozen (which worked really well). I thawed out a couple pieces for hubby and I last night. It was amazing!
  • Thoughts for next time:
    • Sub plums or peaches for apricots.
    • Use the cake batter for a fruity upside down cake (apple, plum, nectarine, berries, etc).

Apricot & Almond Olive Oil Cake
(adapted from Scientifically Sweet)
Makes one 9-inch cake

175g sugar (used 150g)
1 cup (230 ml) milk (1% milk)
finely grated zest of 1 lemon
finely grated zest of 1 orange
1 vanilla bean, split and seeds scraped (used vanilla extract instead)
Added 1 packet of European Vanilla Sugar
1/3 cup plus 1 tbsp (100 ml) extra virgin olive oil (used 50ml EVOO + 50ml canola oil)
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1 1/3 cups (190 g) all-purpose flour
¼ cup (25g) ground almonds
1 ½ tsp baking powder
½ tsp baking soda 
¼ tsp salt 
5-6 apricots, cut into quarters
flaked almonds, for sprinkling

Preheat your oven to 350°F/180°C. Lightly butter and flour a 9x9 inch round springform cake pan, wrapped with a cake strip for even rising, and line the base with parchment paper.

Place the sugar, milk, lemon zest and scraped vanilla bean seeds with the pod in a medium saucepan over low heat and bring just barely to a simmer while stirring frequently to dissolve the sugar. Do not let it boil. Remove from heat, cover and set aside for 15 minutes to infuse and cool down.

In a large bowl, sift together flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Whisk through ground almonds. Add the olive oil, beaten eggs and cooled milk mixture and whisk gently to form a smooth batter. 

Pour the batter into the prepared pan and arrange the apricot quarters on top any way you like. Sprinkle with the flaked almonds and bake for 30–35 minutes or until golden brown and a skewer inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Transfer to a wire rack to cool in the pan for 10 minutes before removing the sides and leaving to cool completely. 

If you are using very small apricots, they may plummet to the bottom of the tin during baking. To avoid this, make a double layer of apricot quarters.


  1. Replies
    1. Thank you Peggy :) it really was. I'm glad I still have a couple slices in the freezer.

  2. I like your adjustments! I quartered my apricots and they still went to the bottom =)

    1. Oh no! Well then, that's that. I guess they're supposed to sink. I hope your cake turned out.

  3. Looks very nice - I'm back and I might still make it. Not reading the recipe to the end and just starting (and forgetting something) sounds just like me :)

    1. I'm glad you made yours. It looked wonderful!


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