As you know, Susan and I both love entertaining, especially easy entertaining. The best way to enjoy your guests and partake in the fun is to plan ahead, so you can relax and enjoy time with friends. My go-to desert lately, has been a delicious olive oil cake. The recipe is so easy, and it makes two, perfect for freezing and whipping out when you don’t have time to prepare something else.
This recipe was sent to me by the boyfriends Mom from The Oregonian. It was created by the pastry chef at the delicious Paley’s Place in NW Portland.
Lauren Fortgang’s Olive Oil Cake
2 cups all purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
2 1/4 cups granulated sugar
Grated zest of one orange
1 1/2 cups extra virgin olive oil (fruity preferred)
1 1/2 cups whole milk (I use whatever we have in the house and it works fine)
*makes two 8×5 inch loaf pans
Preheat oven to 35o degrees. Grease and flour two 8×5 inch loaf pans. Tap out any excess flour. (I also add parchment paper to the bottom of the pan)
In a medium bowl sift together the flour, salt, baking powder and baking soda; set aside.
In a large bowl, whisk the eggs and sugar together. Whisk in the orange zest. In a separate bow, mix the olive oil and milk. To the sugar mixture, alternately add the flour mixture and the olive oil mixture, beginning and ending with the flour mixture. The batter will be quite wet and loose.
Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pans and bake on the middle rack of the oven for approx. 50 minutes, turning the pans once during baking. Remove the cakes when they are golden brown on top and spring back to the touch.
I usually top this with a light glaze made of the juice of one orange (the one you use the zest from), mixed with sifted confectioners sugar. 3 1/2 tablespoons juice to 2 cups of confectioners sugar. However, last night I made the most delicious blueberry sauce from berries I had from the farmer’s market. Also super easy, and great for saving!
Fresh Blueberry Sauce via Southern Food
2 cups fresh blueberries
1/3 cup sugar
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Wash and crush blueberries; add sugar, lemon juice and salt. Mix well. In a small saucepan, bring blueberry mixture to a boil; boil 1 minute. Add vanilla. Chill.
* I also added a small amount (1 teaspoon or less) of cornstarch because the sauce seemed a little runny. Also, I ran my hand blender through the sauce to make sure the berries were crushed enough, as I didn’t crush them before I added them to the pot.
All in all, a fantastic desert that makes you look fancy, but allows you to spend all the time in the world enjoying your guests and your delicious creation.