French-Style Yogurt Cake with Lemon

This is a recipe that comes directly from Molly Wizenberg’s wonderful book A Homemade Life.  She loves lemon and dessert just about as much as I do and I am extremely grateful for it.  I whipped up this little baby in about 15 minutes and my friends and husband loved it.  This is now one of my standard go-to dessert recipes.  I think it would be amazing with some crushed raspberries soaked in some lemon juice and zest. Oh yeah….*drool*


1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
pinch of salt
2 tsp grated lemon zest
1/2 cup well-stirred plain whole-milk yogurt (not low-fat or non-fat)
1 cup sugar
3 large eggs
1/2 cup veggie oil (I used canola)

Preheat the oven to 350.  Great a 9-inch round cake pan with butter or cooking spray.  Line the bottom of the pan with a round of parchment paper and grease it as well.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt.  Add the lemon zest and whisk thoroughly.

In a large bowl, combine the yogurt, sugar, and eggs, stirring to mix well.  Add the flour mixture and stir to just combine.  Add the oil and stir well.  As Molly warns, this will look like a “horrible, oily mess” but she’s right that if you just keep at it, eventually the oil will come together in the matter.  In the end it will be a smooth, pale yellow.  Pour into the pan and bake for 25-35 minutes, and use a tester to make sure the centre is cooked.  Molly warns not to overbake it – I’m not sure what will happen if you do, but I assume it’ll just be really dry. Let the cake cook for about 15 minutes on a wire rack.  Then invert the cake and remove it from the pan, putting it back on the wire-rack, with the domed-side (top) facing up.  Place a baking tray under the wire rack. Make the syrup:


1/4 cup powdered sugar, sifted
1/4 cup lemon juice

Whisk together these ingredients and spoon it over the warm cake.  The syrup will run down the cake and onto the baking tray.  Cool the cake completely and make the icing:


1 cup powdered sugar, sifted
3 tbsp lemon juice

Combine the ingredients and whisk well to make sure the sugar is totally dissolved.  Spoon the icing over the cooled cake.

This cake is delicious the day you make it but I felt it gained a bit of complexity on day 2.  So don’t encourage your friends to eat too much and ensure you have some leftovers!

Tagged , ,

2 thoughts on “French-Style Yogurt Cake with Lemon

  1. […] French-Style Yogurt Cake with Lemon Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:LikeBe the first to like this post. […]

  2. Alana says:

    I just finished reading this book called “Bringing up Bebe”, about raising children according to some of the French culture’s parenting standards. (Apparently this is my topic of choice these days). Anyways, yogurt cake is a go-to recipe in most households in France – kids apparently know how to make it by the time they’re 3 years old or so. It sounded delicious in the book and I can’t wait to start making it!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: