Lavender and Citrus Olive Oil Cake

Lavender and Citrus Olive Oil Cake

Even though we are still very much in the depths of winter, each new sunny day or fresh breeze has us thinking of spring; naturally, the longer one weathers winter’s cold, the more eagerly one anticipates spring’s arrival.

Naturally, the season’s rare warm days inspire dreams of brisk spring mornings and new growth, but all we can do is wait, perhaps freshening up our indoor space and daily routines and urging in light while keeping watch for the first true hints of spring.

On top of our standard preparations to ease some of this winter weariness, we’ve also taken to baking this deliciously comforting, decidedly spring-appropriate cake, featuring Rhubarb Lavender Spoon Preserves handmade by Girl Meets Dirt.

The most magical thing about the preserves from artisan Audra Lawlor’s Girl Meets Dirt is the passion that she has for her craft: Audra preserves the bright, fresh flavors of heirloom fruit in wonderfully flavorful, distinctive jams that immediately transport us to a warm spring day with our first taste. They are the perfect cure for those ‘wishing-for-spring-in-winter-blues.’

Inspired by Audra’s approach, we added her preserves to a delicious winter citrus olive oil cake, then whipped up some extra special whipped cream for the perfect finish. The result is the ideal treat to distract us from our wait for the transition of seasons; no matter the weather outside, it will brighten your day and warm your heart.

Ingredients

For the cake (Maialino’s Olive Oil Cake):

2 cups all-purpose flour

1 3/4 cups sugar

1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2  teaspoon baking powder

1 1/3 cups extra-virgin olive oil

1 1/4 cups whole milk

3 large eggs

1 1/2 tablespoons grated orange zest

1/4 cup fresh orange juice

1/4 cup Grand Marnier orange liqueur

For the Lavender Whipped Cream:

2 tablespoons dried lavender

1 1/2 cups heavy cream

2 tablespoons confectioner’s sugar

To Assemble:

Rhubarb Lavender Spoon Preserves

 

Process

  1. Infuse the heavy cream: Combine the heavy cream and dried lavender in a jar and leave refrigerated overnight to infuse the cream with lavender.
  2. Preheat oven to 350° Grease a 8 inch round pan that is at least 2 inches deep with olive oil and line the bottom with parchment paper.
  3. In a large bowl whisk together flour, sugar, salt, baking soda and baking powder.
  4. In another large bowl, whisk together olive oil, milk, eggs, orange zest, orange juice and Grand Marnier.
  5. Whisk in dry ingredients with the wet until just combined.
  6. Pour batter into prepared pan and bake for 1 hour. The top should be golden and the cake tester should come out clean.
  7. Transfer cake to a rack and let cool for 30 minutes.
  8. Run knife around edge of pan, invert cake onto the rack and let cool completely for about 2 hours or until ready to serve.
  9. Just before serving, strain the lavender from the infused heavy cream. Whip the lavender cream with confectioner’s sugar until cream is fluffy and forms stiff peaks.
  10. Cut the cake in half, making two thinner cake rounds. Place your bottom cake round on your plate. Spread the Lavender Rhubarb Spoon Preserves on the bottom cake round. Add a 1-inch layer of Lavender Whipped Cream on top of the jam and then place the top cake round on top of the whipped cream. Spread another thin layer of Lavender Rhubarb Spoon Preserves atop the cake and top with more Lavender Whipped Cream. Sprinkle with dried lavender, if desired, then cut and serve!

 

This cake is best made and served fresh—so encourage your guests to have seconds! Enjoy!