Citrus, Avocado, and Olive Oil Cake – A Heart-Healthy Treat

This cake is heart-healthy!  I know what you’re thinking…how can cake be heart-healthy?  But hear me out…though this cake may have sugar and eggs, like any old cake, its two main ingredients – avocados and olive oil give this cake it’s heart-healthy antioxidants.

Introduce Citrus, Avocado and Olive Oil Cake.

Avocado is a good source of potassium, a mineral that helps regulate blood pressure and can guard against stroke.  Additionally, one cup of avocado has about 23% of the Daily Value for folate, a nutrient important for heart health.

The beneficial health effects of olive oil are due to both its high content of monounsaturated fatty acids and its high content of antioxidative substances. Studies have shown that olive oil offers protection against heart disease by controlling LDL (“bad”) cholesterol levels while raising HDL (the “good” cholesterol) levels.

I was inspired to invent this cake after attending an Avocado Festival.  Everything imaginable was made with avocados there – ice cream, smoothies, ceviche, tacos, guacamole, candy, bread, etc.

So, having four avocado trees in my backyard, I have an endless bounty of this green, healthy produce, and you can only make so much guacamole.

Citrus, Avocado, and Olive Oil Cake

*1 1/3  cup flour
*1 1/2 tsp baking powder
*4 eggs
*1/2 tsp salt
*1 1/3 c sugar
*1 tsp citrus rind
*Juice of one small lime/lemon/orange
*1/3 c olive oil
*1 medium, ripe, Haas avocado, mashed

Preheat oven to 350º, grease and flour a round 10-inch cake pan or spring form pan.
Combine the flour and baking powder in a bowl.  Whisk the four eggs until frothy in another bowl.  Gradually add the sugar while whisking.  Add the salt, citrus rind, citrus juice, olive oil.
Add the liquid mixture to a well in the flour mixture.  Stir well, but gently, almost folding the egg mixture into the flour.  Finally, mix in the mashed avocado and stir until no more green pieces can be seen.
Pour into prepared pan, and bake for about an hour, or until light golden brown on top.  Let cool in pan.  Run knife around edges and invert onto wire rack.  Sprinkle with powdered sugar.  This cake can also be served with a  simple citrus glaze, but it is fantastic on its own.

Go Cook Something

It’s amazing how we connect over food.

Food has the magical ability to bring together people of all cultures, break barriers, it joins us, create stories, create memories.  For me, food has been significant in my life.  Some of my earliest memories of food are dusting powdered sugar on my mother’s freshly-baked, raspberry linzer cookies, or how she and my father would slave away for days in the kitchen canning homegrown bounty.  My childhood is rooted in these types of memories, and for that I am so grateful.  My parents taught me to appreciate this thread of life.

And so I dedicate this post to them…to the two of them, for teaching me the wonderful art of epicurism.

I recently came across a drawing in a book by children’s author and illustrator, Dan DiPaolo, and it resonated strongly with me.  I couldn’t help but pull out my camera…

So, in Dan’s words….go cook something.  And even better, share it with a friend.

Homemade Yogurt

Today I discovered something.

I cannot believe 28 years into my life, and it took me this long to make this magical discovery.

Today, I made my own yogurt.  Pure, natural, fresh, plain yogurt.  What a delight!  And for half the price of a container of store-bought yogurt (include bus fare to the fancy American grocery stores where I have to buy plain yogurt…nearly the whole price).

It was the most satisfying discovery to know that with only yogurt and milk, you can make more yogurt, and more yogurt, and more yogurt, and know right where it came from.

Tomorrow I will enjoy a bowl of this pure, simple goodness, drizzled with honey, nuts, granola and sliced bananas.  Add a cup of chai tea and I don’t know what’s better and more comforting than that.  The simple things in life…

Here is the link to the recipe I used.  I would post it here, but it requires lots of photos and exact steps, but don’t fear – it’s really easy and all it really involves is heating milk, cooling the milk, adding yogurt, and letting it sit for 7 hours.  Simple as pie.

Next project?  Make my own butter.

I just had to share….

…my breakfast this morning.  It was simple, yet  delectable!