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Desserts

Toma's olive oil cake

Toma's olive oil cake
(Kirk McKoy / Los Angeles Times)

Reader Joan Moon of Burbank loves the olive oil cake from Toma restaurant, which opened in 2013 in a location on the waterfront in Santa Barbara that has existed for over more than 80 years. Moon writes that she orders ... Read more

Total time: About 1 hour | Makes 10 cakes

Citrus relish

  • 1 orange, zest and segments
  • Segments from 1 ruby grapefruit
  • Zest of 1 lime
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • Orange juice, if desired

Step 1In a bowl, gently stir together the orange and grapefruit segments with the orange and lime zest, along with the sugar. If desired, add a little orange juice to thin for more liquid.

Olive oil cakes

  • 1 cup toasted Marcona almonds
  • 1 cup sugar, plus extra for dusting the muffin tins, divided
  • 1 ½ cups (6.4 ounces) flour
  • 1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt 
  • Zest of 1 orange
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • 3 eggs
  • ¼ cup milk or buttermilk
  • ¾ cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • Prepared citrus relish
  • Whipped cream, for serving

Step 1Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Place the almonds in a food processor and pulse to a medium or fine grind.

Step 2Prepare the muffin tins: Spray each muffin tin with vegetable spray and dust with a coating of sugar. Sprinkle about 2 teaspoons of ground almonds on the bottom of each tin. Set aside.

Step 3In a medium bowl, whisk together the remaining ground almonds along with the flour, baking powder and salt.

Step 4In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, or in a large bowl using a hand mixer, beat together the orange and lemon zest along with the sugar and eggs until light, fluffy and doubled in volume, 3 to 5 minutes. Slowly beat in the milk and olive oil until incorporated.

Step 5Gently fold in the flour mixture just until combined. Divide the mixture evenly among the muffin tins, filling each 2/3 to ¾ full.

Step 6Bake in the center of the oven until the top is set and the crown is very lightly browned, 15 to 20 minutes. Remove and cool the racks on a tray.

Step 7While the cakes are still warm, pop them out of the trays and serve, garnished with the citrus relish and whipped cream.

Note: Adapted from a recipe by chef Nat Ely of Toma Restaurant in Santa Barbara.

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