One of the first cakes that French children learn to make is this yogurt cake. As a matter of fact variations of this cake are one of the few desserts that are made in home kitchens in France. With the availability of patisseries in every village it is much easier to buy a luscious dessert than to make one.
It is simple to make. There is no special equipment required. It is just a matter of mixing the ingredients together. The only unusual step in making it is how the lemon zest is treated. The lemon zest is added to the sugar and then rubbed into it. This releases the lemon oils and moistens the sugar
It is also a versatile cake. Bake it in a round pan or a bread pan. Glaze it with marmalade or jam. Split it and fill it with strawberries and top with whipped cream. Or eat it plain with a cafe au lait. I think I will try it many ways this summer. This recipe is courtesy of Bon Appetit.
FRENCH YOGURT CAKE (GATEAU AU YAOURT)
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1 cup sugar
1 tablespoon finely grated lemon zest
3/4 cup whole-milk Greek yogurt
1/2 cup vegetable oil
2 large eggs
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Coat a standard (8 1/2 x 4 1/4″) loaf pan with nonstick vegetable oil spray. Dust with flour; tap out excess.
Whisk 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, 2 tsp. baking powder and the kosher salt in a medium bowl.
Using your fingers, rub 1 cup sugar with the lemon zest in a large bowl until sugar is moist. Add the yogurt, vegetable oil, eggs and vanilla; whisk to blend. Fold in dry ingredients just to blend.
Pour batter into prepared pan; smooth top. Bake until top of cake is golden brown and a tester inserted into center comes out clean, 50 to 55 minutes. Let cake cool in pan on a wire rack for 15 minutes. Invert onto rack; let cool completely.