There’s a café in the East Village called Abraço that’s isn’t so much a café as it is a window. You walk up, get your cortado, a slice of their famous olive oil cake, and then stand around and talk to the other patrons. It’s New York at its best. To us, this kind of eating is joyful, makes you feel good, beautiful, confident, and happy. But wait! There’s dairy and gluten and sugar?! The horror! But if you’re enjoying it on occasion with a smile, can it really be that bad? Maybe it’s even good for us to not be too rigid, to enjoy. We can’t always be perfect, and trying to be definitely doesn’t lead to happiness. So, in honor of our favorite, joyful East Village café, we bring you the best Olive Oil Cake Manhattan has to offer. It’s pure magic. We recommend serving it as intended, with coffee and friends.
Olive Oil Cake
1 ½ cups Unbleached White Flour
1 cup Sugar
½ teaspoon Baking Soda
½ teaspoon Baking Powder
¼ teaspoon Kosher Salt
2 large Eggs
¾ cup Whole Milk
½ cup mild-flavored Olive Oil
2 teaspoon finely grated Orange Peel
Preheat oven to 325F. Oil and flour a 9x5x3-inch metal loaf pan. Whisk first 5 ingredients in a large bowl. Whisk eggs, milk, olive oil, and orange peel in medium bowl to blend. Gradually whisk egg mixture into dry ingredients. Pour into the prepared pan.
Bake cake until tester inserted into the center comes out clean, 50-60 minutes. Cool in pan on rack for 20 minutes.
Decorate with a glaze, baby’s breath, and more orange peel if you so desire.
Photo by Sally Griffiths