Wednesday, September 18, 2013

A Peach Of A Cake

If you love peaches as much as I love peaches, this post is for you!  We had scored some really beautiful, big peaches at the market this week and my friend Carla told me about a peach cake she read about in the June issue of Food and Wine magazine. The cake was made with olive oil as the shortening and that piqued my interest for all sorts of healthy reasons, as well as just plain curiosity.

I found the recipe online and dutifully copied it down, but when I read the comments, they seemed to suggest that the cake was very heavy on olive oil, so I decided to cut that down. When I was assembling the ingredients, too, I thought the recipe recommended too much sugar, so I reduced that as well. Lastly, it was suggested that it be served with vanilla Greek yogurt or vanilla ice cream and I had neither of those in the house, so decided to add a little vanilla to the batter instead.

Oh, and Carla recommended four peaches instead of three, so I took her advice on that one, too.

The cake is made as a sheet cake and, honestly, it's just as good as a morning coffee cake as it is for dessert, maybe even better. It has a distinct flavor of olive oil when served warm, as its creator suggests, but that disappeared once the cake cooled and I think I preferred the simple taste of the peaches rather than the oil.  I drizzled a little crème fraiche on mine and, man, that was good!  The crème fraiche did a sort of yin-yang thing with the fresh peaches for a flavor bonus.

Made with our modifications, it's only lightly sweet and chock full of peach slices so it stays wonderfully moist even a day or two later.  The peach skins melt into the cake - no need to peel them. It made a huge amount for just the two of us, so I ended up taking some on the Tiburon sunset cruise with our cousins and giving some away to the neighbors as well. And we still had half a pan full. Next time, I will likely figure out how to halve three eggs and the recipe, as well.

Here's the final recipe I used. I think you'll enjoy it - it was quite simple to make, tastes wonderfully of fresh peaches, and it really is a peach of a cake.

Sweet Peach Olive Oil Cake (modified)

4 ripe peaches, pitted but left unpeeled, and thinly sliced
1 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 cup sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt (I didn't have the kosher salt the recipe called for, so I reduced the amount of table salt)
3 large eggs
2 cups all-purposed unbleached flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon vanilla

Greek yogurt or vanilla ice cream (optional)
I used a driz of crème fraiche and that was delicious.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a 9 x 13" baking pan with parchment paper and coat with vegetable oil spray. In a bowl, toss the peaches with 1/4 cup of the olive oil, 1/4 cup of the sugar, and the salt. Let stand until juicy, about 15 minutes.

In a bowl, whisk the eggs, the remaining sugar and olive oil. In another bowl, whisk the flour, baking powder, and baking soda. Whisk the dry ingredients into the egg mixture. Fold in the peaches and juices.

Scrape the batter into the pan and bake for 35-45 minutes, until golden and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Let cool slightly, then serve with Greek yogurt if you like.  

I liked it even better at room temperature - less oily in flavor.


Blogger Namastenancy said...

A peach of a recipe - maybe the next time I am hosting coffee hour, I will make it. However, I am still partial to my grandmother's peach cobbler. Now there is nothing remotely healthy about all the butter and sugar that went into that but oh - what a peachy treat!

Wednesday, September 18, 2013  
Blogger Zoomie said...

Nancy, I think butter and sugar _are_ healthy - I'll bet your grandmother lived to a ripe old age, even eating cobbler every now and then.

Thursday, September 19, 2013  
Blogger Diane said...

Sounds heavenly. I love peaches. And my good friend makes a lovely morning cake with olive oil.

Thursday, September 19, 2013  
Blogger Zoomie said...

Diane, the morning cake sounds interesting. Any chance of sharing? :-)

Thursday, September 19, 2013  
Blogger Diane said...

Pam, I will have to ask her for her recipe. I have never made it. I'll get back to you about it.

Saturday, September 21, 2013  
Blogger Zoomie said...

Diane, thanks. Don't go to a lot of trouble, as I don't bake often. But, if you should happen to see her...

Sunday, September 22, 2013  

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