…for a delicious cake! Summer has officially graced us, and I’m at the tail-end of a week packed with Greek inspired flavors, so I felt a dessert encompassing sweet lemons and fresh thyme, was in the cards. Bringing a fresh summer element, I opted for blackberries and thought they’d marry-up well with the other flavors. So, what do I make with all this? Well, I decided these ingredients would hold-up well in a loaf cake with a sweet dose of extra virgin olive oil. We just visited this ingredient recently with our sweet olive oil ice cream, but who can have too much of a good thing, right? Until I find out otherwise, there is cake to be baked and this one is a knockout!
Just ever so sweet, simple, and perfectly baked with summer’s bounty – delicious! Sometimes when I develop new recipes, especially for baking, I’m just never sure what the outcome will be. It can go either way! I have to say this one was what I hoped, and I will be making it again soon. Though in my next go round, I will add more fresh blackberries & thyme. I feel the cake was not lacking, but could have hosted more of these easily. The fresh lemon zest was perfectly paired, yet still subtle; definitely not overpowering. Homegrown lemons really make a difference, and I have my parent’s lemon tree to thank this time.
Let’s make a cake…
- 1.5 cups flour
- 2 tsp baking powder
- ½ tsp salt
- 1 cup sugar
- 3 eggs
- 3 tsp lemon zest
- 2 tsp chopped, FRESH thyme
- 2-2.5 cups fresh blackberries (may need to cut large ones in half)
- ¼ cup whole milk
- ½ tsp vanilla
- 2 T Meyer Lemon EVOO (I get from WeOlive) *if you don't have, use more zest!
- ¾ cup (less 2 T) extra virgin Olive Oil (EVOO), sweet variety like Arbequina or Koroneiki)
- *Powdered sugar for topping cake
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees
- prepare loaf pan with butter/shortening and flour, set aside
- Combine dry ingress: flour, baking powder, salt.
- In small separate bowl, toss blackberries and fresh thyme with 2 T flour (this is to help berries to not sink to bottom of cake while baking!).
- In bowl of an electric mixer combine eggs, lemon zest and sugar, beating well.
- Add vanilla.
- Beat in milk.
- Add oil, gradually until incorporated.
- Add dry ingredient mix gradually till combined, only stirring lightly.
- Now gently stir in blackberry/thyme mixture until folded.
- Bake in loaf pan for about 40-50 min depending on pan and oven. Mine took 50 min, until toothpick inserted into center came out clean!
- Cool cake in pan, on rack for about 40 min, and slice.
- Dust top with powdered sugar and serve warm or at temperature.
This is a great alternative to your average blueberry muffins! Thyme is an unsuspecting ingredient, but when fresh lends a pleasant, earthy contrast to the lemon zest we use. Summer ripened berries are best and I would only go with fresh. Though, the ones at my local market are rather large, so I opted to slice some of them in half so they didn’t plummet to the bottom of my cake pan! Tossing the berries and thyme with a couple of tablespoons of flour pior to adding into the batter, helps to prevent automatic sinkage! Sweet olive oil in lieu of butter, gives a hint of subtle flavor, while making for a perfect crust and texture. This cake is very moist and I’m already looking forward to my next batch…