It felt like every stall at the Italian Market was selling figs, so I felt inspired to put it on a layer cake. This olive oil cake is one of my favorites, and olive oil cake + figs seemed like the perfect combination.
As a side note, I think I am 20-something year old who gets super excited about getting individual plates for the sole purpose of photography for Christmas, but I’m very ok with it.
makes 1 three-layer cake
Olive Oil Cake
- 3 c extra-virgin olive oil; plus more for pan
- 2 1/2 c sugar
- 4 c cake flour
- 2/3 c fine-grind cornmeal
- 4 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- 4 tsp vanilla extract
- 6 eggs
- Preheat oven to 400°. Drizzle bottom and sides of 3 9-inch circle pans pan with oil and use your fingers to coat. Line bottom with a round of parchment paper and smooth to eliminate air bubbles; coat parchment with more oil.
- Whisk cake flour, cornmeal, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl to combine and eliminate any lumps. Using an electric mixer on high speed (use whisk attachment if working with a stand mixer), beat eggs, vanilla, and sugar in a large bowl until mixture is very light, thick, pale, and falls off the whisk or beaters in a slowly dissolving ribbon, about 3 minutes if using a stand mixer and about 5 minutes if using a hand mixer.
- With mixer still on high speed, gradually stream in oil and beat until incorporated and mixture is even thicker. Reduce mixer speed to low and add dry ingredients in 3 additions. Fold batter several times with a large rubber spatula, making sure to scrape the bottom and sides of bowl.
- Scrape batter into prepared pans and smooth the top. Place cake in oven and immediately reduce oven temperature to 350°. Bake until top is golden brown, center is firm to the touch, and a tester inserted into the center comes out clean, 40–50 minutes.
- Transfer pan to a wire rack and let cake cool in pan 15 minutes. Poke holes all over top of cake with a toothpick or skewer and drizzle with 4 tbsp oil; let it absorb. Run a thin knife around edges of cake and remove ring from pan. Slide cake onto rack and let cool completely.
- For the best flavor and texture, wrap cake in plastic and let sit at room temperature at least a day before serving.
Honey Cream Cheese Frosting
- 16 oz cream cheese, softened
- 1/2 c butter, softened
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 c honey
- 1-2 c powdered sugar
- Using an electric or hand mixer, whip the cream cheese and butter until light and fluffy, about 1 minute.
- Add salt, honey, and sugar until well combined.