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Sat, Oct 31, 2020
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Spiced Olive Oil Cake (Πικάντικη Ελαιόλαδο κέικ)

Cretan Cuisine (Κρητική κουζίνα)-Spiced Olive Oil Cake (Πικάντικη Ελαιόλαδο κέικ)

Spiced Olive Oil Cake (Πικάντικη Ελαιόλαδο κέικ) is just the recipe for when the Brits, Irish or other ex-pats are after a lean cake for the new year, something sweet with less hard fat and carbohydrates. With this recipe you'll have to think more about flavouring than with buttery baking. Dairy fats seem to register on the taste buds as richly flavoured and comforting, and it's surprising how that all vanishes once you cut them out. Cretan Olive Oil is world famous for it's health benifits. Just see how it works in this recipe.  With a pungent olive oil you might want to increase the spice, unless you particularly like the olive flavour. Ground ginger and cinnamon work well. Or add another flavour, such as caraway seeds, dried berries, or wine instead of water, to mix it up and cut the intensity. Play with the sugar you use: I started with a basic dark-brown type, but you could equally use a molasses-rich muscovado or an plain white granular sugar.

Makes one 20cm diameter cake


  • 3 medium eggs
  • 150g soft dark-brown sugar
  • 150ml olive oil (Cretan if possible)
  • 30ml cold water
  • 200g wholemeal spelt flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 2 tsp ground spice, any sort you like


  1. Line the base and sides of a deep, round 20cm cake tin with greaseproof paper, and heat the oven to 180C.
  2. In a large mixing bowl beat the eggs and sugar with an electric mixer for 1-2 minutes on high speed until creamy, slightly thick and pale.
  3. Add the oil and water then beat again until evenly mixed through. If you want to add any extras such as grated zest, chopped nuts or flavourings, add them now.
  4. Measure the flour, baking powder and spice into another bowl, stir them together with a spoon, then add this to the eggs and fold through quickly but gently until just combined.
  5. Pour the mixture into the tin and bake for about 50 minutes or until a skewer poked in comes out clean.
  6. Leave to cool in the tin then split and layer with jam, icing or buttercream. You can also make a simple sugar syrup, flavoured with vanilla, and spoon a little of this over the split cake before decorating.

Spiced Olive Oil Cake (Πικάντικη Ελαιόλαδο κέικ) as made by Dan Lepard of the Series: Step-by-step baking. In the Guardian.

Enjoy your meal (Καλή όρεξη)

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