Lemon & olive oil cake – Christophe Bacquié.


Prep time: 30 minutes

Cook time: 1 hour

Serves: Serve 6 :

It’s been a while since I made a cake. And today I’m sharing with you chef “Christophe Bacquié”recipe, three times Michelin starred and having obtained the title of “MOF : meilleur ouvrier de France (Best Craftsman in France ) in 2004”, who was kind enough to share it with his followers during the first lockdown. I think many people must already know it, it’s the famous “lemon & olive oil cake”.

If you ever don’t make it yet, don’t hesitate for a second.

Since I made it in March 2020, I have stopped all pursuit of the perfect lemon cake. This ultra simple cake with Mediterranean flavors, is light, moist and perfectly balanced. The olive oil goes wonderfully with lemon, it also softens the lemon, and provides moisture from its high fat content.

This cake is very easy to make:

First, mix together the finely grated lemon zest and the caster sugar, rub with your hands to release all the oils and scent of lemon into the sugar. Leave aside time to prepare the mold and weigh the rest of the ingredients.

Add the eggs and the cream to the sugar, whisk until the mixture is foamy (about 2 – 3 minutes).  Incorporate the sifted flour and baking powder, once it’s smooth, add the warmed olive oil, stop whisking once the oil has been incorporated.Be very careful not to overmix the batter.

Pour into the previously buttered and floured mold.

The trick to having a nicely humped cake straight out of the oven:

Option 1: we take out the cake after 20 minutes of baking, the cake must be taken from the sides and make an incision with an oiled pastry scraper along the entire length of the cake. Return to the oven to continue baking.

Option 2 the easiest one : fill a small pastry bag with a tablespoon of cold butter, cut the end about 3mm.  Then we will come and draw a line along the entire length of the cake, before placing it in the oven, and you will have a nice dome.

Check the cake by inserting a knife that should come out clean.

Once cooked, we soak the cake with a syrup flavored with lemon, then garnish with candied lemon.

The cake is left to cool completely before tasting, ideally the next day.  You can also coat it with lemon jelly, or neutral glaze to give shine to the cake and to protect it from drying out.  But it is not essential.

 You will see this cake will be unanimous.

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Lemon & olive oil cake - Christophe Bacquié.

  • Prep time: 30 minutes
  • Cook time: 1 hour
  • Total time: 1 hour 30 minutes
  • Serves: Serve 6 :

Mold : 20cm/ 8,5cm/ 7,5cm height (1200ml)

Ingredients :

The batter cake:

  • 4 lemons zest
  • 160 g caster sugar
  • 140 g whipped cream liquid
  • 4 eggs, (200g)
  • 240 g all purpose flour , plus extra for the mold
  • 4 g baking powder
  • 80 ml olive oil
  • butter , for the mold

Syrup :

  • 60 ml mineral water
  • 60 g caster sugar
  • 60 ml lemon juice

Assembly :

  • diced candied lemon
  • 1 Tbsp neutral glaze or lemon jelly

Method :

  • 1)

    Preheat the oven to 150C Fan. Grease and line the mold.

  • 2)

    In a large bowl put the sugar then grate the lemon using a microplane. Rub the sugar and zest with your hands and set aside for about 30 minutes (or longer if possible)  so the zest can release all the flavors.

    Add the eggs and cream, then whisk until you get a pale and foamy mixture.

  • 3)

    Now add the sifted flour and baking powder. Then the lukewarm olive oil, once incorporated, stop mixing.

  • 4)

    Pour into the previously buttered and floured mold.

    Fill a piping bag without a piping tip with 1 tablespoon of cold butter, cut off the end about 4mm, then draw a line in the middle along the length of the cake.

    Bake for 50 minutes – 1hour at 150C Fan, until golden brown and a skewer comes out clean. If the cake it starts being brown but it’s not cooked yet, cover it with aluminum foil and continue baking. Let it cool for 5 minutes before unfolding it.

  • 5)

    Meanwhile, make the syrup: put all the syrup ingredients in a saucepan, once the sugar has dissolved, continue cooking for 1 minute.


  • 6)

    Soak the cake with the syrup using a brush (use all the syrup).  Cover with cling film or put it in an airtight container .

    The next day, cover the cake with lemon jelly or neutral glaze and decorate it with diced candied lemon. This step is not essential.

    Enjoy !!


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