Citrus season in California is a revelation. Growing up in the midwest, we generally got two kinds of citrus in the winter: hard lemons, limes and Valencia oranges, and clementines, which could be hit or miss. Since moving to Oakland about a year and half ago, the produce has blown me away. Who knew that there were so many kinds of tangerines? Not to mention blood oranges, pomelos, and Meyer lemons. We're lucky enough to have both lemon trees and rosemary bushes in close proximity, and the combination is so natural.
I made this cake for a recent dinner party, though the cake wasn't too sweet, the sugary glaze almost made it taste like a donut (in the best way). I used blood oranges because that's what we had (and what gave the icing its pink hue) but lemons, oranges or tangerines would be equally delicious.
As an aside, you may have noticed that things are a bit different around here—I decided to move my site from Wordpress to Squarespace after several months of consideration. I found that Squarespace more intuitive to use, and since I don't know much about coding, I felt like I was limited by Wordpress's design choices, and yet not knowledgable enough to create my own CSS. Please let me know if you have any issues—I believe that unfortunately if you're a subscriber through Wordpress that you may need to resubscribe through Squarespace using the sidebar, and I'm working on fixing any bugs. You may also notice some new pages (you can now see my professional writing and video), as well as banner ads. As always, I plan on keeping the content you see here authentic and true to my tastes.
And now, what you're really here for: cake!
Citrus & Rosemary Cake (adapted from The New York Times)
Butter, for greasing the pan
2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more to flour the pan
¾ cup extra-virgin olive oil
½ cup plus 1 teaspoon sugar
1 ½ tablespoons finely grated blood orange zest (from about 2 oranges)
1 ½ tablespoons packed finely chopped rosemary leaves
½ cup Greek yogurt
2 teaspoons baking powder
¼ teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed blood orange juice
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
2 cups confectioners’ sugar (or more as needed)
Rosemary sprigs (optional), for decoration
- Make the cake: Heat oven to 325°. Butter and flour a 9-inch springform pan.
- Put olive oil, sugar, orange zest and chopped rosemary leaves in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Whisk on medium speed until combined, then add eggs, one at a time. Whisk for another minute, until thick, then add yogurt and mix until combined on low speed. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and the whisk.
- Sift flour, baking powder and salt together into a small bowl. Add the dry ingredients to the olive oil mixture and mix until combined. Increase speed to high and mic for 1 minute.
- Scrape batter into cake pan and smooth the top with a small spatula. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, or until cake is cooked and a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean. Remove from oven and let cool for 10 minutes before inverting onto a serving plate. (You may want to trim the cake at this stage, if it rises unevenly, to allow it to sit flat on the plate.)
- Prepare the icing: In a small bowl, whisk together orange juice, lemon juice and confectioners’ sugar until smooth. When the cake has cooled, drizzle icing on top, allowing it to drip down the sides of the cake, then top with rosemary sprigs.