Olive Oil Cornmeal Cake

This cake actually made its appearance a couple of months ago, but I kind of forgot about it. Not because it wasn't memorable, but because I forgot I took any picture of it. I'm happy to share it today because it brings back some wonderful memories of the end of summer, spending time with friends, and eating outdoors on a beautiful late summer night. This simple cake is an elegant ending to any meal. The flavors of the olive oil and the wine really shine through, but in a subtle and wonderful way. They add such a unique flavor that, combined with the slightly gritty texture of the cornmeal, perfectly finish off a relaxing evening. 

I really enjoyed the wine in this cake, but I'd like to also try it with the orange juice. I didn't end up using the orange zest when I made it, but if I ever make it with orange juice instead of the wine I would definitely add the zest. I also wondered if buttermilk would work instead of the wine or orange juice, just as something different. I might give that a shot some time. But then again, I liked the wine so much, I might not try anything else!

Olive Oil Cornmeal Cake
From Martha Stewart

  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup sugar, plus 1/3 cup for topping
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine (or orange juice)
  • 1 1/4 cup flour
  • 1/2 cup cornmeal
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • Finely grated zest of 1 orange (optional)


Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Brush bottom and sides of an 8-inch round cake pan with oil; line bottom with a round of wax or parchment paper, and brush paper with oil.

In a large bowl, whisk together oil, eggs, 1 cup sugar, and wine until smooth. Add flour, cornmeal, baking powder, salt, and orange zest; whisk gently to combine.

Pour batter into prepared pan; sprinkle top evenly with remaining 1/3 cup sugar (topping will be thick). Bake until cake begins to pull away from sides of pan and a tester inserted in center comes out clean, 35 to 40 minutes.

Cool in pan 20 minutes. Run a knife around edge of cake; invert cake gently onto a plate, and remove parchment paper. Reinvert cake onto a rack to cool completely. Serve with orange segments, if desired.