This simple cake embodies summer — from its energizing citrus-y aroma to its fabulous, vibrant yellow color. Unlike a traditional pound cake, this cake does not have butter — but personally, I like the fruity, exotic notes of olive oil and the tang from Greek yogurt (although this might not be the cake for you pound cake purists!).
Just like a wheel of Gouda or a pair of jeans, this cake actually gets better with age. It is delicious straight from the oven, but it is out-of-this-world after sitting on the counter for a few days. Time really lets the succulent lemon syrup sink in, making the loaf super rich and super moist. So, if you can resist, keep this loaf on the counter for a day or two, and then indulge — the wait is worth it!
This would be a perfect easy, elegant dessert for a brunch, served with berries and whipped cream — or even better all by itself with a nice cup of tea. This loaf freezes up beautifully, so luscious, velvety lemon-y goodness can always be at your fingertips.
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 cup whole-milk Greek yogurt
- 1 1/3 cups sugar, divided
- 3 extra-large eggs
- Zest of two lemons
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 1/3 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
Sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt into 1 bowl. In another bowl, whisk together the yogurt, 1 cup sugar, the eggs, zest, and vanilla. 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 until a cake tester placed in the center of the loaf comes out clean. (35 minutes for mini loaf, 50 minutes for regular loaf)
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.
Adapted from Ina Garten’s recipe on the Food Network