Last week, I bought a bunch of rosemary for a recipe I had in mind, and needless to say, ended up with extra and no ideas of how to use it. At the same time, I was searching for ideas on how to best use semolina flour, and came across a recipe on VeganBaking that called for both. So naturally, I had to make it.
This comes, of course, after just learning that M. is not partial to the taste of rosemary in, well, anything. He ended up disliking my first creation, and bearing that in mind, I warned him he might not be super fond of the cake either. I thought it was interesting, but good interesting, although I am mostly in love with the orange frosting, which can be modified with other citrus fruits and definitely used again. But I can always use this basic cake idea and soak the olive oil in something different, in order to shift the focus from rosemary to another kind of subtle herb. Lavender maybe? We’ll see.
The thing I like about this cake, as “different” as it is, is the savory nature of it. It is perfect served as a slice alongside my morning coffee, rather than after dinner. A few variations: instead of flax meal I used flax seed. Also, the recipe calls for bundt cake but I just put it in a large, circular, springform pan of mine and it worked great.
-Mix 1 cup olive oil with 1 ounce fresh rosemary in a saucepan. Bring it to a temperature that is hot, but far from smoking or boiling. Remove from heat and allow it to sit and soak 10 minutes, before straining out the rosemary.
-Combine 1/2 cup warm water and 1 teaspoon active dry yeast. Let sit for 10 minutes.
-Once the yeast mixture has activated, mix in the olive oil, along with 3 1/2 cups semolina flour, 2 1/2 cups water, 1 1/2 cups sugar, 5 tablespoons fresh-squeezed orange juice, 3 tablespoons flax seed or meal, 2 teaspoons lemon zest, 3/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon black pepper.
-Cover the mixture with plastic wrap, poke a few holes in it, and let sit 8 hours, or overnight.
-Mix again shortly, then transfer to a baking pan. Re-cover with plastic wrap and let sit for another 2 hours.
-Heat oven to 325 F (~163 C) and bake for 55 minutes. Allow to cool.
-Mix together 4 cups powdered sugar, 7 tablespoons fresh-squeezed orange juice, 1/4 cup coconut oil, 1 teaspoon vanilla extract, 1/4 teaspoon turmeric, and 1/8 teaspoon salt. Then pour on top of the cake and let it set. Cover the remaining amount and serve on the side, or save for topping on other baked goods.