Sponge Cake with Lemon Zest and Raspberries

Toni Robertson uses fruity extra-virgin olive oil in place of butter, which cuts the cholesterol and produces a light and flavorful sponge cake.

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  • Servings: 8

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  • 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons milk
  • Finely grated zest of 1 lemon, plus 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 4 large eggs
  • 2 cups individually quick-frozen raspberries (6 ounces)

How to make this recipe

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°. Lightly grease and flour a 10-inch round cake pan, tapping out any excess flour.

  2. In a bowl, whisk the flour with the baking powder, baking soda and salt. In a small pitcher, mix the olive oil with the milk and lemon juice.

  3. In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, blend the sugar with the lemon zest. Add the eggs, 1 at a time, and beat at medium speed until thick and pale, about 3 minutes. Beat in the dry ingredients, alternating with the olive oil mixture until the batter is smooth.

  4. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and scatter the raspberries on top. Bake for about 40 minutes, or until the cake is golden and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with a few moist crumbs attached. Invert the cake onto a wire rack, turn it right side up and let cool completely. Cut the cake into wedges and serve.

Make Ahead

The cake can be stored at room temperature for 3 days.


One Serving Calories 309 kcal, Total Fat 9.9 gm, Saturated Fat 1.9 gm, Protein 6 gm, Carbohydrates 49 gm.

Suggested Pairing

Serve an off-dry sparkling wine from Italy or Napa Valley that is slightly sweeter than this delightful, not-so-sweet sponge cake.

Contributed By Published January 2001

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