olive oil turmeric cake

This is a simple straightforward recipe that I tried to needlessly make more complicated a few times, because that’s how I roll! Haha! But in so doing, I learned a few things, so there was value in making a few “test cakes”. They’re all wrapped up and frozen now, waiting to be repurposed. Most likely, Ben will be able to take them to his work for his coworkers, so all is not lost. I miss not being able to share baked goods with people at a jobsite, but I’m grateful Ben still has a jobsite where he can bring all my baking experiments to share them with his coworkers so they don’t go to waste.

The first lesson learned is that turmeric changes color when exposed to an alkaline substance, like baking soda. My first test cake was sort of a pinkish, orange color, similar to blood orange, which wasn’t bad, but I really wanted to keep the nice brilliant yellow color. A second lesson is that beating eggs and sugar to what is called the ribbon stage is not always a good thing, it depends on the cake recipe and what other ingredients are in the cake. For this recipe, if you beat the egg/sugar mixture even just a couple of minutes longer than specified, you run the risk of creating multiple air tunnels throughout the cake!

If you want to make a larger version of this, just double the amount of each ingredient and use an 8-inch or 9-inch springform pan. Watch the baking time; it may need about 10 minutes more to bake. I was thinking of adding a frosting to this, but I like the cake unadorned and that you can really taste both the olive oil and the turmeric. Store it in an airtight container; it keeps fairly well for several days.

olive oil turmeric cake (makes one 6-inch cake, with 4-6 servings)


65 grams (1/2 cup) cake flour + 65 grams (3/8 cup) semolina flour

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon ground turmeric

2 (100 grams) large eggs

90 grams (1/2 cup) granulated sugar

6 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

6 Tablespoons milk or milk substitute, room temperature

1 Tablespoon lemon juice


Heat oven to 350 degrees F. and grease or line a 6-inch springform pan. Set aside.

Combine the flours, baking powder, salt, and turmeric into a medium bowl and stir with a whisk several times until thoroughly mixed. Set aside.

In a small bowl, add together the milk or milk substitute and the lemon juice and stir. Set aside.

In a medium to large bowl, beat the eggs on high only until foamy, about 30 seconds. Add the sugar and continue to beat on high for 3 minutes until lighter in color and foamy.

Add the olive oil by slowly drizzling it in a steady stream while still continuing to beat on high, another minute or so.

Beating on slow, add half the flour mixture and beat until all the flour is moistened, then add half the milk/lemon juice mixture and continue to beat until it is incorporated. Repeat until all is added in.

Pour into prepared pan and place on center rack in oven for about 30 minutes, until a toothpick in the center comes out clean or with a few crumbs only.

Remove from oven and let cool on a wire rack for at least an hour before serving.

7 responses to “olive oil turmeric cake”

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