Over a year has gone by since I joined the Tuesdays with Dorie Bakers and finally it was my turn to choose the recipe for this week. With so many delicious recipes to choose from it was a difficult choice but finally I chose the French Yogurt Cake with Marmalade Glaze on pages 224-225 of Dorie Greenspan Baking: From My Home to Yours.
This is the type of cake I like the best – simple and moist and easy to make. Two mixing bowls, a whisk and a rubber spatula later and voila! I give you French Yogurt cake. I used orange zest instead of lemon zest and the orange scented sugar smelled heavenly. I decided to bake the cake in my individual mini loaf pan and baked the mini loaves for 25 minutes. Once cooled, I brushed the top of the loaves with orange marmalade.
The mini loaves are just the right size for school snacks. Stack a couple of mini loaves, wrap in cellophane, tie with a bright coloured ribbon and add to a gift food basket. To offer as a hostess gift, leave the mini loafs in the pan, cut a square of basket wrap 2-3 times the size of the mini loaf pan and place mini loaf pan in the centre of the square. Gather the ends of the basket wrap on top of the mini loaf pan and tie with brightly coloured ribbon.
Dorie Greenspan has included a few ‘playing around’ options with the so be sure to visit the Tuesdays with Dorie Bakers to view what option they chose to make.
This recipe is certainly a keeper in my family.
French Yogurt Cake with Marmalade Glaze
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup ground almonds (or, if you’d prefer, omit the almonds and use another 1/2 cup all-purpose flour)
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- Pinch of salt
- 1 cup sugar
- Grated zest of 1 lemon
- 1/2 cup plain yogurt
- 3 large eggs
- 1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup flavorless oil, such canola or safflower
For the Glaze :
1/2 cup lemon marmalade, strained
1 teaspoon water
- Center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Generously butter an 81/2-x-41/2-inch loaf pan and place the pan on a baking sheet.
- Whisk together the flour, ground almonds, if you’re using them, baking powder and salt.
- Put the sugar and zest in a medium bowl and, with your fingertips, rub the zest into the sugar until the sugar is moist and aromatic. Add the yogurt, eggs and vanilla and whisking vigorously until the mixture is very well blended. Still whisking, add the dry ingredients, then switch to a large rubber spatula and fold in the oil. You’ll have a thick, smooth batter with a slight sheen. Scrape the batter into the pan and smooth the top.
- Bake for 50 to 55 minutes, or until the cake begins to come away from the sides of the pan; it should be golden brown and a thin knife inserted into the center will come out clean. Transfer the pan to a rack and cool for 5 minutes, then run a blunt knife between the cake and the sides of the pan. Unmold, and cool to room temperature right side up on the rack.
To Make the Glaze:
Put the marmalade in a small saucepan or in a microwave-safe bowl, stir in the teaspoon of the water and heat until the jelly is hot and liquefied. Using a pastry brush, gently brush the cake with the glaze.
Layered and Round French Yogurt Cake
For a cake that’s just a little dressy – a cake like the ones my French friends make for their children’s birthdays – make the cake in a buttered 9-x-2-inch round pan, baking it for 35-40 minutes. When the cake is cool, use a a serrated knife to cut it horizontally into two layers. You can fill and frost the cake with whatever strikes your fancy, but it’s lovely filled with Lemon Cream (Page 461) or spread with jam or curd and frosted with sweetened whipped cream. Or turn the cake into a strawberry shortcake: Spread the cut layer with strawberry jam, cover it with sweetened whipped cream and top with cut berries. Place the remaining layer atop the berries, and finish the cake with clouds of shipped cream and a circle of big, beautiful whole berries.
Riviera Yogurt Cake
Replace the whole-mild with the same of thick strained yogurt. (To strain, line a sieve with a double thickness of dampened cheesecloth, add the yogurt, put over a bowl, cover and refrigerate overnight.) I use Total Greek Yogurt with 2% fat, which doesn’t need to be strained. Substitute olive oil for the vegetable oil. And, to complete the Riviera flavors, add 1/2 tablespoon finely minced fresh rosemary of 1 tablespoon finely minced mint to the bowl when you are rubbing the sugar and zest together.