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Torta di Capezzana - Extra Virgin Olive Oil Cake

From our dear friend Pamela Sheldon John's cookbook "Italian Food Artisans" (Chronicle Books, 2000) this recipe uses 1 1/2 cups of Tenuta di Capezzana unfiltered extra virgin olive oil instead of butter. You've never tasted a pound cake this moist and seen such a beautiful shade of green when baked:

Tenuta di Capezzana, the estate of Conte Ugo and Contessa Lisa Contini Bonacossi, stands in the gentle hills west of Florence, overlooking the Arno Valley. Documents dating back to 804, in the time of Charlemagne, not the production of wine and olive oil on the property, which were bartered in exchange for use of the land. Today, Frantoio, Moraiolo, Pendolino, Leccino and Santa Caterina olives are milled in a single cold pressing in the family frantoio for one of Tuscany's best artisanal oils. At Tenuta di Capezzana, if any of this moist rich cake is left over from dessert, it is finished off with capuccino at the next day's breakfast.

  • Ready in: 1 hour, 20 min
  • Serves: 12
  • Complexity: easy
Torta di Capezzana - Extra Virgin Olive Oil Cake


  • 3 eggs
  • 2 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups Tenuta di Capezzana unfiltered extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 1/2 cups whole milk
  • Grated zest of 3 oranges, plus 1 orange, sliced, for garnish
  • 2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • Pinch of salt
  • Confectioners' sugar for dusting


* Preheat an oven to 350 degrees F. Butter and flour a 12-inch cake pan.

* In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs and granulated sugar until blended. Add the olive oil, milk, and orange zest and mix well. In another bowl, stir together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Add to the mixture, stirring just until blended. Do not over mix. Pour the batter into the prepared pan.

* Bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, 50 to 55 minutes. Remove to a wire rack to cool completely. Loosen the side with a knife and invert into a serving plate.

* Dust the cake with confectioners' sugar and cut into 12 slices. Garnish the individual servings with orange slices.

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