Sicilian Olive Oil Cake

Serves 16


  • 3 eggs at room temperature
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 12/3 cups whole milk
  • 1 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 Tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons lemon zest
  • 1½ cups flour, plus a little more for dusting the pan
  • ½ cup cornmeal (coarse is better)
  • ½ teaspoons each: baking powder and baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoons salt

Seasoned cook: Zest the lemon first, then cut it for juicing. Bring cold eggs to room temperature quickly by placing whole eggs in a bowl of warm water.


  • Preheat the oven to 350°. Coat a 9-inch round cake pan with oil, then sprinkle flour over it, tapping the bottom and sides until covered.
  • In a bowl, whisk the eggs and sugar until blended well. Add milk, olive oil, lemon juice and zest. Stir well.
  • In a separate bowl, whisk together the rest of the ingredients. Add the liquid mixture to the dry ingredients, stirring until blended. Take care not to overmix; allow lumps.
  • Pour batter into the cake pan. Place in center rack of oven. Check after 40 minutes. Cake is done when a toothpick inserted into the middle comes back clean or with just a few crumbs. Remove from oven and let cool on a rack.
  • Run a knife around the perimeter and invert onto a serving plate. Serve with fruit, lemon curd, or eat it plain.

Per serving: 240 calories, 4g protein, 22g carbohydrates (1g fiber), 15g fat (3g sat fat, 12g mono/poly), 113mg sodium