I can't believe it's already August! The days are cooling (slightly) and are getting shorter. It's putting me in the mood to bake.
One of my favorite cake recipes is from the book "Lunch In Paris: A Love Story with Recipes" by Elizabeth Bard. The book is a memoir of her courtship and subsequent move to Paris. In the book she has scattered recipes. After trying each one, I can honestly say they are all very good! But I especially like the French Yogurt Cake recipe and the background story she gives us about this cake. Bard writes that it is one of the first things French children learn to bake, using the glass yogurt container as a measure, making it easy for them to make.
You can top this cake before baking with any fruit you like, fresh or canned, or none at all. It is great for dessert, breakfast or lovely with a cup of coffee or tea. And it's so moist!
So, without further ado-here is the recipe--
French Yogurt Cake
From Lunch in Paris: A Love Story with Recipes by Elizabeth Bard
1 cup plain, whole milk yogurt
1 cup sugar
A large pinch of sea salt
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/3 cup vegetable oil
2 large eggs
1 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
Zest of one lemon
One 16-ounce can apricots, drained and quartered
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Lightly butter a 10-inch round cake pan and line with parchment paper.
In a medium bowl, combine the yogurt, sugar, salt and vanilla, stirring or whisking until smooth. Add oil in a steady stream, while whisking to combine. Add eggs one by one, whisking to combine after each one.
In smaller bowl, combine the flour, baking powder and baking soda. Add flour mixture little by little to the yogurt mixture, whisking along the way to combine. Stir in lemon zest. Pour cake mixture into prepared cake pan. Top with chopped apricots.
Bake on center rack for 45 minutes, until golden brown and slightly risen; a toothpick inserted in the center should come out clean. Place the cake on wire rack to cool.
This cake is even better the second day -- provided it sticks around that long. It gets more moist as it sits.
Elizabeth Bard points out in her book that this cake is a "blank canvas" that you can make your own based on the fruits you like or have in your fridge at the time. Try fresh raspberries or pears sprinkled with brown sugar, she suggests.