66 Comments

  1. Lovely recipe, Amanda. I am glad you are enjoying the summer, its produce, and most importantly some time off. It sounds like you have been cooking like crazy, and this cake looks and sounds delicous. I love lavender in sweet desserts (I recently made lavender chocolate truffles with almond pulp from making almond milk), but I’ve never made olive oil cake, and it sure sounds like a great combination, especially with the herbs and citrus… yum. Can’t wait to see what other summer recipes you’ve been making (berries in salads, please ! I love doing that myself and am always happy to learn of new combinations).

    • Darya! Those truffles sound amazing, as does the almond milk! Post them! I kind of wish I were at your place. I’m starting to wonder if there is something wrong with me. I get so excited about the earth yielding such beautiful things, it’s like I’m overwhelmed with gratitude. I get the same feeling when I see kids that look exactly like their parents. It’s just amazing how these small miracles work. But yes, I am getting outside and trying to enjoy this wonderful weather.

  2. That sounds delicious. I’ve eaten olive oil cake in Spain, made with almonds, orange and lemon zest, but never with orange juice and Grand Marnier. It reminds me of a Valencian flat mate I had in Barcelona who thought the idea of making cakes and biscuits (cookies) with butter was greasy and disgusting, though I’m not sure that she’d ever tasted any 😉

    • Wow, and here I was thinking this was a very French cake. I have made a torta de santiago before with almonds, orange zest and folded egg whites. But this one is heavy with oil rather than almonds and is kind of way better! It really is the best cake I’ve ever made. Your former flatmate sounds hilarious. I think olive oil cake is probably greasier than butter, but oh it’s so so good. And lavender may just be my new obsession. Thanks for reading, MD. I love your comments.

      • Ha ha – it sounds weird, but I think my flat mate grew up without ever eating much butter. In Spain olive oil is drizzled on bread and poured over cooked vegetables in the way that we’d use butter. I imagine that lard is a far more popular animal fat than butter, aside from in Asturias – the north western part of Spain where most milk is produced.
        I highly recommend tortas de aceite (little flat olive oil cakes) which come from Andalucia:
        http://spanishfood.about.com/od/dessertssweets/r/tortadeaceite.htm

    • That’s what I love about Spain, MD. Americans use butter. I grew up with oil actually because my mom lived in Spain for a while and learned to cook in the Spanish tradition. That’s why my ridiculous web address is ser cocinera. I never had much butter, even though I grew up in a very dairy heavy farm area because my dad is a doctor and understands the effect cholesterol has on the body. Those tortas look unbelievable and I’m obsessed with Andalucia. I’ll make them this weekend! I think they only use lard in the south. I’m too heart conscious to even buy it.

  3. I am a horrible baker, but I love reading this post and indulging in your gorgeous photos. Thanks for sharing. And now I will go and find someone to make this yummy cake for me. 🙂

    • Aw! Thanks, Madhuri. I am not the best baker. It’s the best cake I’ve made because I’ve only managed to make a few successfully. But it really is good and you can do it! I’ve been trying to write this post for over a week, but between work and play it was tough to get out! Next time I’ll bring you a piece. xoxo

  4. Wow, I’ve never used lavender in cooking, it must give an amazing taste along with the rosemary. I hope you get your ice cream maker for your birthday 😉 I know I would be so dangerous if I had one myself! xx

    • Thanks, Sofia. I wonder if anyone who reads this would actually think of doing that for me. I don’t think my husband reads the page. He just eats off of it. What lavender adds is more of a fragrance than a flavor. The scent of the cake is much stronger than the actual taste, which is a very sophisticated experience. It’s flavor is subtle. I wonder if it would come out more if I distilled it in the milk before adding. I’ll have to try it. Ojala que tus estudios de piano vayan muy bien! un beso.

    • Gracias! You will love it! Add some extra grand marnier in honor of your former cleanse. I’d never had an olive oil cake before, but I”m obsessed with olive oil these days. I’d love to take a bath in it and then eat my way out of it little by little. But that’s just me.

    • That’s a great idea. The lavender came from my friend’s garden. It’s more for fragrance than for flavor. I think the blackberries would work wonders. I love berries. Thanks for commenting as always, Jovina.

  5. Looks amazing. I love lavender and rosemary in something citrusy and sweet. Our neighbor has a bush of each that she “shares”. 🙂 I have only snagged some lavender once, out of respect, but I love it in butter and sugar, as well.

  6. This looks frighteningly delicious, Amanda. I am sure both taste and flavor are amazing with the rosemary, olive oil, and lavender. I’m looking forward to the market this weekend to pick up fresh herbs and flowers and produce. Like you, I love the abundance of summer. I’ve had more salads this summer than the prior 6 months combined. If you need to get rid of herbs, try an herb pie. 🙂

    • Oh wow! Great suggestion. Do you have a link to one? I’ve got lots of basil. I was thinking of muddling it in a lemonade for a dinner party on friday and then spiking it with vodka 🙂 I too have been having crazy salads. I seriously found a winning combo with that olive oil and orange juice dressing I made in the post about mung beans. Obsessed. I went camping this weekend and thought of you because this post was dreadfully overdue!

      • I’m on my phone so can’t link up, but if you google “Ottolenghi herb pie” the first hit should be from the guardian. Delicious recipe, though I do cut out some cheese due to personal preferences. Basil is the best herb to have too much of! I like your idea for drinks. I’ve tried the olive oil and orange dressing on a winter salad before, but am reminded I should try it again. Perfect for summer salads too, I think. Looks like you had a fun time camping! I need another week off already. 🙂

      • I really want to try this, but I’ve never baked with lavender before and I don’t want to buy it and have it sitting on the shelf for ages. Although the truth is, I’ve been seeing it in lots of recipes lately, so maybe I’ll buy it and test it out with this cake 🙂

        • I just got a few sprigs of it fresh from my friends garden. You can buy a plant and just have it. It adds more scent than flavor. I want more of it.

  7. OMG, what a beautiful post, your images are amazing. To be honest I’ve never thought about baking with olive oil, I am one of those butter bakerette’s. I believe that olive oil makes this cake more soft and moist. Thank you for sharing Amanda.

    • Thank you! This cake specifically highlights the olive oil. I’m not sure it would work in every cake. It would be overpowering. But this is a total keeper. Thanks so much.

  8. positively stunning! Have always wanted to make an olive oil cake. You’ve gone all out with the lavender, etc. Your description of the crispy crust has me drooling. Envy you your garden 🙂

    • Thank you, Liz. It’s my friend’s garden. She just gifted me all this stuff that I had to find amazing recipes for! You will love this.

  9. What a rich and amazing combination of flavours in this dreamy cake… I’m mesmerised by all those tantalising photos… So lucky (and smart) of you to make such a delicacy out of these amazing ingredients… Wow, I’m in awe, seriously…

    • Aw thank you so much, nena. It’s the best cake I’ve made and as you know I’ve got some baking fears. This is high praise coming from an amazing baker like you. Besos!

  10. What a gorgeous cake Amanda! I love the bundt shape and there you go again using wonderful edible flowers. 🙂 Your photographs are so beautiful, especially love the opening shot. I’m going to make your cake for sure. I would skip dinner and have this instead.

    • Thanks so much. You will like this a lot since we have similar tastes. I had no idea you could eat flowers until a few years ago so I’m a latecomer to the game. I seriously ate it for breakfast and dessert for a little less than a week. 🙂 Enjoy!

  11. Oh my goodness – I’m printing this off right now. How exquisite. And your photographs…. unbelievable. I wish you’d take me under your wing and do some food shoots with me. Please run classes…. xo

  12. Fig & Quince

    What a gorgeous post! I kept saying “wow” outloud as I read and scrolled down. Wow! Thank you for a beautiful feast. And happy one-month-early birthday! And hope you get your ice cream makers but also, have you considered making popsicles? Would love to see your take on that.

    Lovely post and recipe and photos and everything!

    • Thank you so much, Azita! You are so kind. I like popsicles and hasn’t really tight of that! Thank you. Maybe I’ll add that to my list and see how creative I can be. Great idea! I hope you’re enjoying the summer. Xoxo.

      • Fig & Quince

        I was selfishly thinking of my own (vicarious) pleasure when suggesting popsicles. I know you will do amazing things with it. I KNOW it!

    • Thanks, dedy. I think you’ll do a great job. Your mom sounds like an amazingly talented cook. That coconut cream cake sounds heavenly! I hoe you try this, is easy for cooks like us who aren’t huge bakers.

  13. This sounds so good! I once had olive oil and rosemary cake at a little wine bar in Fort Greene, it was definitely a memorable dessert. I’ll have to try your version!

    • Thanks so much. It really is something you’d find in a wine bar. It’s subtle and sophisticated and makes me look the same when i serve it 🙂

  14. Beautiful photos and a lovely recipe! I just loved looking at the photos and wishing it was summer here. How wonderful to have so much summer produce to inspire you! I think I will be making this as mini-bundts later this week. I’ve been experimenting with no butter cakes, and some have gone…a bit meh. This one looks like a reliable winner. 🙂

    • Thanks so much. This one is absolutely a keeper. So good. Use good quality oil. Mini bundts sounds great! I am so happy it is summer here. We had a very rough winter. Enjoy and enjoy!

  15. The cake looks amazing and moist, Amanda! Edible flowers … what a coincidence! Here in Sardinia (where I’m on vacation) I see them in every restaurant. They look lovely and their delicate purple color complements the color of the cake wonderfully!

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