Wish you a very Happy New Year! Hope 2011 was a great one for you and wish you have an even better year ahead! Do you make any resolutions? Do you break them? I never, never break them!!! I don't make any you see! We are pretty boring folks that way...no new year parties, no fuss, no resolutions. 2011 has been rewarding, have loved and enjoyed blogging, learnt a couple of new things too. A mention and a tiny article in the local edition of the magazine, Time Out Bangalore, made me so happy! Felt truly, truly honored when Deeba Rajpal, India's most famous and best baker-blogger, mentioned my little space as one of her 5 favorite Indian blogs, in her interview with Blogadda! Left yours truly tickled pink and blushing beet red indeed!
Being a (part-time) working wife and mother of two, obsessed foodie, baker and blogger, wearing many hats with ease and efficiency, is something I am yet to learn. Sigh! Moving ahead, hope 2012 will bring even better times, good health and happiness, hope to be more organized and do more in a day (only 24 hours and so many things to do!). Daughter starts her dance classes, son wants to take up cricket - it is effort along with academics, for both them and us. But we owe it to our kids - to give them the wings and help discover their interests and potential. Takes some zipping around and how I loathe not being comfortable in the driver's seat! Probably time to practice driving ( yep, I do have my license, but am too chicken!) and hopefully get myself a set of wheels! Long list, I know! But nobody ever said, being parents, and to two kids at that, is easy. Hope to achieve at least some of the above in the near future.
We are not much of believers in New Year, Valentine's Day and the kind . Unless it something of personal significance, we think of it as just another day. Well, I told you we are boring! But I always look forward to seeing the date on the calendar. This means schools will reopen after the Christmas vacations. Kids finally out of my hair for some time at least! Relief!! Hubby's birthday is just around the corner. So, a much awaited decorated cake is in the offing - am excited!! My blog anniversary happens to be right after that, have an ongoing event and a giveaway for you.
On this happy note, here is a simple loaf cake made with extra virgin olive oil and yogurt, Dorie Greenspan's recipe. She calls this the simplest loaf cake, needing no more than a whisk and a bowl to put the cake together. I love cakes baked with oil as they are much more moist and much less fuss too. This cake can be made with any neutral oil of course and I tried it with rice bran oil as well, but EVOO lends a distinct flavor and richness to the cake. Yogurt is something most of us have at home at all times, so no extra effort for this. A kind of less rich, but flavorful, healthier version of a pound cake if you please. Just my kind of tea-cake, non-buttery, just about sweet, light, yet tasty, with a refreshing hint of citrus and of course the EVOO.
I have halved the below recipe and baked in a small loaf pan. (Had too many goodies around, so this had to be baked, but in a smaller quantity) You can find the original recipe here
All-purpose flour - 1 1/2 cups / 195 grams
Baking powder - 2 teaspoons
Salt - a pinch
Sugar - 1 cup (I use granulated sugar, measured and then coarsely powdered)
Finely grated zest - from one lime
Plain whole milk yogurt - 1/2 cup
Eggs - 3, large
Pure vanilla extract - 1/4 teaspoon
EVOO (extra-virgin olive oil) - 1/2 cup
Center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 180 degrees C / 350°F. Grease, flour and line a 8 1/2-x-4 1/2-inch loaf pan. Whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt, keep aside.
Put the sugar and zest in a medium bowl and rub the ingredients together until the sugar is fragrant. Whisk in the yogurt, eggs and vanilla. When the mixture is well blended (say about a minute with your wire whisk), gently whisk in the dry ingredients. Switch to a spatula and fold in the oil. The batter will be thick and shiny. Scrape it into the pan and smooth the top.
Bake the cake for 50 to 55 minutes (25-30 minutes for a half the recipe), or until it is golden and starts to come away from the sides of the pan; a knife inserted into the center of the cake will come out clean. Cool on a rack for 5 minutes, then run a knife between the cake and the sides of the pan. Un mold and cool to room temperature right-side up.
Dorie says the cake keeps at room temperature for at least 4 days and can be frozen for up to 2 months.
You could use lemon or orange zest. If you do not want to use either, step up on the vanilla extract.
Thanks to all my friends for sending me their entries for my blogiversary event! If you have not yet sent, there is just about a week more left for you to send in your cookies and get a chance to win a copy of Alice Medrich's Chewy, Gooey, Crispy, Crunchy Melt-In-The-Mouth Cookies .