Friday, July 30, 2010

Olive Oil Cake Recipe & the Benefits of Olive Oil

Hello sweet friends! Thanks so much for dropping by to say g'day. It's so lovely to see you.

Now, I have a very important question to ask....Do you like Olive Oil?
Olive Oil Cake Recipe & the Benefits of Olive Oil

I am sure you already know by now that Olive Oil is good for you due to both its high content of monounsaturated fatty acids and its high content of antioxidative substances. Clinical studies have shown that olive oil may reduce cardiovascular risk factors by decreasing plasma triglycerides, total and low density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol, platelet activation, inflammation and oxidative damage, and increase high density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol and antioxidant status. (Better Health Victoria)

Courtesy of: HomeTipsWorld.com

Studies have also shown that olive oil offers protection against heart disease by controlling LDL ("bad") cholesterol levels while raising HDL (the "good" cholesterol) levels.

Other studies have also shown that EXTRA VIRGIN olive oil, from the first pressing of the olives, contains higher levels of antioxidants, particularly vitamin E and phenols, because it is less processed.

Research suggests that olive oil may also have a role in lowering the risk of several types of cancers, including breast, colon, lung, ovarian and skin cancers. Chemical compounds specific to olive oil, known as phenolics, appear to combat the build-up of free radicals in the body and may be able to reduce oxidative damage to DNA. (source)

Olive oil may also help reduce or manage blood pressure, obesity, rheumatoid arthritis and immune function.
Olive Oil Cake Recipe & the Benefits of Olive Oil
Olive oil has been used for thousands of years in cooking and is one of the cornerstones of the Mediterranean diet. It is very versatile and, with its unique flavor and aroma, has become a must-have in all kitchens.

Williams Sonoma

Good oil, like good wine, is a gift from the gods. The grape and the olive are among the priceless benefactions of the soil, and were destined, each in its way, to promote the welfare of man. George Ellwanger (1848-1906) 

Different olive oils complement different foods and uses. Here is the gorgeous Curtis Stone to tell us more about the different varieties of Olive oil!

Olive oil can be used for sautéing, browning, stir-frying, deep frying, as an ingredient in marinades and sauces such as mayonnaise or pesto and as a condiment, drizzled over various dishes.

Olive oil is graded into several different types for sale, the most common of which is extra virgin

It is of course always appreciated as a bread dipper or simply dabbed on a toasted piece of country bread that has been scratched with a clove of garlic.

Another way to get a serve of this healthy oil is to try it in sweet foods, like cakes!

I recently stumbled across a recipe for Ina Garten's Lemon Yoghurt cake and decided to substitute the vegetable oil for olive oil and the end result was just delicious!

Olive Oil Cake Recipe & the Benefits of Olive Oil, Natasha in Oz

The cake is rich, fruity, moist and just plain YUMMY!

Olive Oil Cake


1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
pinch of salt
1 cup plain whole-milk yogurt (I used a rich and creamy Greek Yoghurt)
1 1/3 cups sugar, divided
3 extra-large eggs (I used organic and the bright yellow yolk coloured the cake beautifully!)
2 teaspoons grated lemon zest ( about 2 lemons)
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/2 cup oil (I used an extra fruity Extra-Virgin Olive Oil)
1/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice.

For the glaze:
1 cup confectioners' sugar
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
Olive Oil Cake Recipe & the Benefits of Olive Oil, Natasha in Oz

Preheat the oven to 180C or 350F . Grease your desired pan. Ina Garten suggests using a loaf pan but I used a round cake pan. Line the bottom with parchment paper and the grease and flour the pan.

Sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt into 1 bowl. In another bowl, whisk together the yogurt, 1 cup sugar, the eggs, lemon zest, and vanilla.

Olive Oil Cake Recipe & the Benefits of Olive Oil, Natasha in Oz

Slowly whisk the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients. With a rubber spatula, fold the oil into the batter, making sure it's all incorporated. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for about 50 minutes, or until a cake tester placed in the center of the loaf comes out clean.

Meanwhile, cook the 1/3 cup lemon juice and remaining 1/3 cup sugar in a small pan until the sugar dissolves and the mixture is clear. Set aside.

When the cake is done, allow it to cool in the pan for 10 minutes. Carefully place on a baking rack over a sheet pan. While the cake is still warm, pour the lemon-sugar mixture over the cake and allow it to soak in. Cool.

For the glaze, combine the confectioners' sugar and lemon juice and pour over the cake.

Olive Oil Cake Recipe & the Benefits of Olive Oil, Natasha in Oz

I hope you enjoy this fruity, sweet and lemony cake!

Thank you so much for visiting me today my dear friends.

Best wishes for a wonderful weekend,

Natasha In Oz 

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