Monday, September 2, 2013

Back to Oregon: Pear Hazelnut Oil Cake with Greek Yogurt Whipped Cream


I never had it set out in my life that I'd one day try out the East coast. It just super naturally happened that the husband and I moved to Philadelphia for about a year. I learned a lot. I worked in the pork industry and it was fascinating. I hope to reflect on my experiences more in future posts as this cognitive content begins to metabolize a bit more. 

The United States is so vast! As a born and raised Californian, I've become enamored with the state of Oregon (hence, marrying a native). Reflecting on my time in Pennsylvania, I realized my infinite love and allegiance to the West Coast. I love it all, particularly, Oregon. So, I'm happy to say, we're on our way back to Portland! I will be a full blown Oregonian in less than 3 days. Blazer hat, flannel, and thirst for good coffee all born ready for what's ahead. 

Portland has been my first for so many things. One of those being hazelnut oil. The fresh hazelnut oil from Freddy Guys found at the Portland State Farmers Market did me in. Socks absolutely blown off. It's no where to be found in Pennsylvania but there is still such thing as hazelnut oil here. In honor of the return to the Promise Land (as my best friend Heather, a native Portlandian, calls it) I made this cake which hints Autumn (trying to embrace it), hazelnuts (Oregon!), and Greek yogurt (Heritage!). I baked it in a skillet because, yah, it screams lumberjack.

Whoa, Greek yogurt whipped cream! Why haven't I made this sooner? It's like some sort of luxurious tangy mousse. Pretty much two desserts in one if you count the cake. I can't wait to do more with it. Also, this cake is spiked with mahlepi - an enchanting spice used in Greek sweets baking. It's rich with amaretto undertones. It will make the entire house an enchanted one. If you don't have any mahlepi, just write my Aunt Mary a letter. Or use more almond extract or a shot of amaretto liquor. 

Pear Hazelnut Oil Cake with Greek Yogurt Whipped Cream

1/2 cup AP flour
1/2 cup sprouted spelt flour or whole wheat flour (I used One Degree because they have incredible flour)
1 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 cup hazelnut oil
1/2 dark brown sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp mahlepi
1 tsp almond extract
3 pears, 2 cubed, one sliced for the top

Greek Yogurt Whipped Cream
1/2 pint whipping cream
7 oz Greek Yogurt (I used 2%, Fage is best!)
2 tablespoons sugar
  • Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.
  • Mix flours, salt and baking soda together until well incorporated.
  • Blend oil, sugar, eggs mahlepi and almond extract together with beaters until smooth. Incorporate with dry mix, then fold in the diced pears.
  • Pour into well greased skillet and top with sliced pears. 
  • Bake for about 40 minutes or until inserted toothpick comes out fairly clean. 
  • In the meantime, whip cream until thick but not stiff. Add sugar and whipped until stiff. Fold in Greek yogurt gently with a spatula until incorporated. 
  • Serve cake warm or cool with whipped cream (and coffee!). 


Diana said...

Whoa! Gorgeous cake and gorgeous news! If news can be gorgeous. I think it can. Glad to hear your headed back to the best coast. ;)

Diana said...

OMG you're!!! I can't believe I did that!

Banana Wonder said...

Diana - Glad to be back on the Best coast with my TALF. Hope to see you in LA or PDX???

Peter G | Souvlaki For The Soul said...

You are a genius! I adore everything about this cake! Especially the mahlepi and that yoghurt cream! (I'm stealing it!). I'm glad you're back in Oregon!

Katerina said...

Fage is the best yogurt here as well! The cake looks very appetizing and the addition of Greek yogurt makes all the difference! I wish to you a smooth settle down to Oregon!

Banana Wonder said...

Peter - Flattered! Thank you and I hope your travels take you to these parts sometime soon so we can Greek it up.

Katerina - Efharistw! It is the best and I am glad you think so too :-)

33 said...

thank you for the recipe and i am glad to find another baker who'd use whole wheat mixed with AP flour. I do that all the time trying to eat healthy.

portland is the land of good eats. am sure you'd be posting old favorites and new finds soon.

Anna @ The Littlest Anchovy said...

What a gorgeous cake! Love the ingredients you used here and I am really happy for you that you are back in the place that you love! Its good to be back here!