Olive Oil Upside Down Fruit Cake

I got this upside down fruit cake recipe from a Central Market Olive Oil tasting class where they made the cake with nectarines. If you ever run across an olive oil class, sign up. Olive oil is more interesting than you think and it’s fun tasting different kinds side by side….well, smelling. You only take very tiny tastes. And then of course, you sample the oil in different dishes. I learned that my favorite type was Greek, but for this cake, use a lighter and less robust olive oil. Typical grocery store olive oil should work just fine.

I’ll post a picture later. I have to go buy fruit and olive oil.

Olive Oil Upside Down Fruit Cake

Olive oil & granulated sugar for pan
5-6 plums or 2-4 nectarines (whatever is in season)
1 1/4 cups cake flour (5 oz)
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup granulated sugar (divided use)
1/2 cup buttermilk
1/4 cup olive oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 large eggs, separated
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 cup blueberries or raspberries
1 teaspoon flour

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Brush a 9 inch round springform pan with olive oil and dust with granulated sugar.

Lay sliced plums or nectarines neatly, in whatever pattern you choose, over bottom of pan.

Combine the flour, baking soda, salt and 1/2 cup of the granulated sugar in a mixing bowl and stir well.

Whisk the buttermilk, olive oil, vanilla and egg yolks together in a second bowl, then add to flour mixture and stir until smooth. Add lemon zest and lemon juice and mix well.

Whip egg whites until soft peaks form, slowly adding the reserved 1/4 cup sugar to the whites as you beat. Whisk the cake batter into the egg whites until well blended. Pour the batter into the sugared pan covering the plums/nectarines. Toss berries with flour and scatter over the batter.

Bake 30-35 minutes** or until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool on a rack for 10-15 minutes and remove the ring from the springform pan. Cool another 5 minutes. Turn over on rack and slowly remove base. Cool and serve with whipped cream.

**The cake may take more or less time depending on fruit. Check it at 30 minutes and continue cooking until it seems golden brown and a wooden pick inserted comes out clean.

(adapted from Paul S. at Central Market Cooking School)

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  1. Louise says

    I did an olive oil sampling at the Fancy Food Show a couple of years ago. And we’ve visited several producers in Portugal, Southern France and Italy. Very interesting to try oils side-by-side. Made the mistake, a long time ago, of trying an olive straight off the tree. Whew!! I know why olives are “cured”.

  2. T. Martin says

    Thanks for this one Anna. I recently have been trying some Olive Oil Cake recipes and though none have been disasters I have yet to find one to which I would give a gold start. I’ll have to add this one to my list of recipes to try.

  3. says

    Thanks Jane! And you were a fine teacher, indeed ;).

    Was this Paul’s original recipe or did he get it from another source? If it’s his, I’ll put a credit.

  4. says


    Have you ever thought about submitting your blog to Amazon for publication to their kindle device? I just got a kindle, which I love, and it has a large number of blogs available on it but none that I already follow. Since I look at yours most days, I’d love to get it that way.

  5. Carrie says

    How funny, I tried some Olive Oil at Central Market today. There were a few ladies trying it and as I saw their reactions to certain oils I thought, ok, I gotta try some. I tried the greek oil and it had a distinctively differnt flavor. Cake sounds yummy.

  6. KAnn says

    Oh, I just discovered that I prefer Greek olive oil, too! I am least fond of Spanish…I was a bit embarrassed to admit that I wasn’t all that fond of olive oil until I participated in a blind taste testing at Whole Foods-definitely did not care for the Spanish and was just so-so with the Italian. I did purchase Olove Oil Baking last year but haven’t used it yet. Your cake looks fabulous and sounds delicious.

  7. says

    What an interesting sounding cake! I love the idea of olive oil in a sweet cake. I would love to take an olive oil tasting class. Sounds so fun. This cake sounds like a perfect start to the weekend!

  8. Janet says

    I am looking forward to seeing how this cake looks. I, like others, have not tried using olive oil in baking. I did have a Doctor tell me to use it for my dry skin (on my hands( I couldn’t stand the strong smell and the oil stains on everything;-) I’d love to try your cake recipe though. What did your family think of it? Thanks!

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