While leafing through by Alice Medrich for the first time, her Sherry and Olive oil Pound Cake called to me. Perhaps it was my partiality towards olive oil or citrus based quick breads, or the way the loaf was pictured in her book, wrapped in a parchment paper. Either ways, I made a mental note to make it at home some day. That some day proved to be elusive. Reasons like having one too many baked goods during the holiday season, and running out of ingredients can be blamed. Or to be honest, the cook in me went on hibernation for sometime.
Only after seeing , I realized what I am abstaining from. Cenk, who writes at Café Fernando, needs little introduction in the food blogging community. Amazing photos, inspiring posts and down-to-earth recipes makes CF one of the cherished blogs. Incidentally, Café Fernando this week. Many congratulations, Cenk.
Coming back to the recipe, there was no reason not to try it; for it was a citrus based olive oil pound cake. I followed the recipe, but made two changes. Tangerines were used in place of clementines; egg whites were used instead of whole eggs, as there was enough fat in the recipe.
I was pretty excited when I baked the pound cake for the first time. The loaf was golden and risen; looked and smelt good. When I popped the first piece into my mouth, it was… er, disappointing. The cake was not sweet enough and looked like it could use more salt. Dejected, I wrapped the left-over loaf and left it in the countertop. I was thinking trifle or bread pudding to disguise it. Two days later, I took one last peek at the cake, before losing it into the depths of my refrigerator. It looked glossy and aromatic, so I doubtfully took a bite. Kapow! The cake tasted divine. The sugar and salt was just right; best of all, I could smell and taste the citrus and the fruity olive oil. Now I know the trick. It gets better as it sits. With this knowledge, here is the recipe, with due credits to Alice Medrich for the original version and Cenk for the tweaked version.IngredientsAll purpose flour – 2 cups
Baking powder – 1½ tsp
Salt – ¼ tsp
Sugar – 1 cup
Tangerine zest – 2 tbsp
Extra-virgin olive oil – 2/3 cup
Eggs – 3, whites only
Tangerine juice – 1 cupMethod
Preheat oven to 375F. Line a loaf pan with parchment paper. Sieve all purpose flour, baking powder and salt in a bowl and set aside.
In a large bowl, take sugar and zest and whisk them with an electric beater to release flavour from the zest. Add olive oil and whisk until well combines. Beat eggs into the oil mixture one at a time. Divide flour into 3 portions and juice into 2. Add flour and juice alternately to the egg mixture, mixing gently after each addition. Pour into the prepared pan and bake for 50 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool completely on a wire rack, wrap in a foil and enjoy after a day or two for enhanced flavour.