When I was first transitioning out of restaurant work into the food media world I volunteered for Karen Mordechai at Sunday Suppers a handful of times. Honestly, it was mostly my nosiness lead me to contact Karen. I had followed her work online and was so inspired by the dreamy light-filled space that she had created in a formerly industrial space in Brooklyn that I just had to see it in person- and I was too broke to buy a ticket to one of her dinners...I met so many wonderful people through Karen and Sunday Suppers and the experience really informed how I have decided to make my own career in food.
I admire what Karen has built so much (she even has a line of beautiful pantry essentials called ILA), and wasn't surprised at all when I took a look at her new work - Simple Fare. It is part art catalogue - part simple recipe inspiration to carry you through the Spring and Summer and so Karen. I can't wait to see the Fall/Winter edition in the coming months.
Congrats, Karen! It's lovely and this Dark Chocolate Olive Oil Cake is delicious too!
Dark Chocolate Olive Oil Cake
Karen offers some suggestions of different ways to top the cake, and there is a recipe for delicious cardamom infused cream below. I went with whipped yogurt sweetened with a bit of honey, chopped pistachios, and the rose and cacao nib sprinkles from Lily's Kale and Caramel Cookbook. Choose your own adventure!
3/4 cup (180ml) extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for greasing the pan
1/2 cup (50g) good-quality unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 cup (120ml) boiling water
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
1 1/3 cups (165g) all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 cup (195g) superfine sugar
3 large eggs
Cyprus flake salt
1/2 cup (120ml) heavy cream
1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
1 teaspoon dried rose petals
1/2 cup (65g) chopped unsalted pistachios
Cyprus flake salt
Preheat the oven to 325ºF (165ºC). Grease a 9-inch (23cm) springform baking pan with a little olive oil and line the base with parchment paper cut to fit.
Sift the cocoa into a medium bowl and whisk in the boiling water until smooth. Whisk in the vanilla, then set aside to cool slightly. In a separate large bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, and salt.
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat together the sugar, olive oil, and eggs until you have a light, fluffy cream, about 3 minutes.
Turn the speed on the mixer down and pour in the cocoa and vanilla mixture. Slowly add the flour mixture until it is evenly incorporated, stopping the mixer and scraping down the bowl as necessary.
Pour the batter into the prepared pan and sprinkle with flaky salt. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, or until the sides are set and the top of the cake still looks slightly moist. A cake tester inserted into the center should come out clean or with just a few crumbs on it. Let cool in the pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes.
While the cake is baking, in a chilled metal or glass bowl using a hand mixer, beat the cream on medium speed until soft peaks form, about 4 minutes. Add the cardamom and beat until stiff peaks form, about 1 to 2 minutes more. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.
Run a knife around the edge of the cake and release the sides of the pan. Transfer the cake to a serving plate or cake stand. Sprinkle with more flaky salt. Serve each slice with a dollop of the cardamom cream and a sprinkling of rose petals, pistachios, and flaky salt.