Grapefruit Olive Oil Cake

Citrus season is here! Our grocery store is chalked full of all different types of citrus and I am in heaven. Today I picked up a punch of meyer lemons and blood oranges.... I can't wait to get baking all kinds of different  treats! 

This recipe comes from The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook, but I originally saw it on Josie's blog, Pink Parsley. I love grapefruit and had a ton to use after getting a box of Hale from my Mom as a gift. I loved that this recipe used all the different parts of the grapefruit from the zest to the fresh juice in three different ways.  The bread is moist and full of citrus flavor, the syrup brings a wonderful sweet stick quality to the bread and the glaze give the perfect tartness that any grapefruit treat needs. 

This cake was a big hit in our house. I gave Kellen a little taste before dinner (big mistake), and he threw himself to the floor with all the drama and sadness his two year old body could muster when I told him we needed to eat dinner before he could have more. Learned my lesson..... eat it ALL and don't tell the child..... I was going to bring this to my co-workers to share and enjoy, but I think I will keep it home for the us....they will just have to settle on the meyer lemon bars I am bringing later this week! 

An exciting thing happened yesterday! Remember my friend Amanda? She was the one Ron and I volunteered for on election day. Since then, she won her election and her inauguration and swearing in to her new role as Wisconsin State Assembly Representative was yesterday! I am so excited for her! I unfortunately wasn't able to be with her, but the ceremony was on the public radio station and I was thankfully able to listen in on the action. I just had to share because it is such a wonderful accomplishment! 

Wisconsin is still freeezzziiiinnnggg! This winter stuff is for the birds some days..... I miss the Farmer's Market and sitting by the lake, but I am hoping the cold snap will go by fast! 


butter for the pan
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, + more for the pan
2 Tbl freshly grated grapefruit zest (1-2 grapefruits)
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup turbadino or raw cane sugar (granulated sugar can be subbed)
1/2 cup good olive oil
2 large eggs, at room temperature
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp table salt
2 Tbl freshly squeezed grapefruit juice
1/3 cup buttermilk or yogurt (I used plain greek yogurt)

2 Tbl granulated sugar
1/3 cup freshly squeezed grapefruit juice

1 cup confectioners sugar
2 Tbl freshly squeezed grapefruit juice


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees, and butter and flour a 9-by-5-inch loaf pan.

In a large bowl, rub the grapefruit zest into the sugars with your fingertips.  This will help it release as much flavor into the sugar as possible.  

Whisk in the oil with the sugar, and add the eggs one at a time, and scrape down the bowl after adding.

In a second, smaller bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.  

Combine the grapefruit juice and buttermilk in a liquid measuring cup.

Alternating, add the flour and buttermilk mixtures to the sugar-oil mixture, beginning and ending with the flour.

Pour the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top.  Tap the pan on the counter a few times to pop any air bubbles.

Bake 45 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.

As the cake is baking, make the syrup.  Combine 2 tablespoons of sugar with 1/3 cup of grapefruit juice in a small saucepan.  Cook over low heat until the sugar dissolves, stirring occasionally.  Set aside. 

When the cake is finished, cool it in the pan for 10 minutes.  Meanwhile, line a baking sheet with parchment paper or foil, and top with a cooling rack.  Carefully invert the cake onto the rack, and use a toothpick or skewer to poke holes all over the top (don't go all the way through though).  Pour the syrup over the cake slowly.  Allow the cake to cool to room temperature.

To make the glaze, whisk together the confectioners sugar, and grapefruit juice until smooth.  Once the cake has cooled, pour the glaze over the cake, allowing it to drizzle down the sides.  Allow glaze to set after pouring, slice and serve.

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