This month's Cake Slice Baker's choice is Lemon Verbena Peach Yogurt Cake (or for you fancy people, Gâteau au Yaourt, à la Verveine et au Pêches) from the cake cookbook Gâteau: The Surprising Simplicity of French Cakes.
First I had to figure out what verbena is, then find it somewhere. Instead of fresh verbena, I used dried; aka, verbena tea leaves. It smells wonderful - herby and slightly lemony. The leftover will make good tea this winter if it ever decides to get under 100° here in Texas!
Just as in the previous cakes from this book, it is simple and delicious.
The only strange ingredient here is the verbena and it was so mild in the flavor of the cake that I think it could be left out. You'll still have a delicious, lemony, beautifully textured loaf cake.
Pretty much for this cake you put the dry ingredients in a bowl, the wet ingredients in another bowl, then stir them together along with the fresh chopped peaches.
The addition of yogurt makes it wonderfully moist. I wish I could take better photos so you could see that texture.
You can tell by the ingredients that it's going to be a great cake. As usual, of course, I taste tested the batter and it was marvelous too! (Don't worry, I didn't taste enough to be affected by the eggs.)
What is Verbena?
Verbena is an herb and in France is referred to as verveine. It has a wonderful, slightly lemon flavor and can be used in sweet as well as savory dishes.
It also has been touted as treating anxiety, depression, insomnia and a plethora of other ailments. Most, though, people use it fresh or dried in recipes, as well as dried for a pleasant tea.
I couldn't find it readily available in my usual grocery store, so ordered it from Harney & Sons, a wonderful source for common as well as uncommon tea flavors.
I liked this cake - especially the fresh peaches. Be sure and pat the peaches dry if yours are especially juicy, so that they won't mush up in the cake. You can use frozen peaches, too.
Lemon Verbena Peach Yogurt Cake is simple to put together and great as a dessert or with tea and coffee for a snack or breakfast. Leave out the verbena if you can't find it.
Don't forget to check out the other Cake Slice Bakers's choices listed below the recipe!
- 1 ⅓ Cups (265g) granulated sugar
- 1 tablespoon dried verbena, crushed and stems removed
- Lemon zest of 3 lemons
- 1 ⅔ Cups (200g) all-purpose flour
- ¼ teaspoon fine sea salt
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 Cup (250g) plain whole yogurt
- ½ Cup canola oil (or other mild oil)
- 2 large eggs, room temperature
- 1 ¼ Cups peaches, peeled and cubed
- Preheat oven to 350°. Butter a 9x5" loaf pan. Line bottom with parchment paper and butter the top of the parchment paper.
- Put the sugar, verbena and lemon zest into a large mixing bowl and rub together with your fingers to release the citrus and oils. Add the rest of the dry ingredients and whisk to thoroughly combine.
- In a medium mixing bowl, whisk the yogurt, oil and eggs together until smooth. Pour wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and stir together with a rubber spatula until blended. Gently stir in the peaches.
- Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 55-65 minutes. Insert a knife into the center of the cake to test - it should come out clean with a few crumbs.
- Set the cake on a cooling rack and cool for at least 30 minutes before turning it out onto the rack.
- Best for about 3 days after you bake it (store at room temperature). It freezes well, also.
If you can get fresh verbena - great! Chop the leaves very finely.
I used verbena tea and crushed it by rubbing it between my palms. I did find I needed to go in and remove some stems from that.
The original recipe calls for organic lemons. I used regular lemons because, well $$$.
Stir the batter together gently, but make sure there are no streaks of flour left.
If your peaches are very juicy, after you chop them pat them gently with a paper towel to dry a little so the batter won't be too wet.
Each month The Cake Slice Bakers are offered a selection of cakes from the current book we are baking through. This year it is Gâteau: The Surprising Simplicity of French Cakes by Aleksandra Crapanzano. We each choose one cake to bake, and then on the 20th - never before - we all post about our cake on our blogs. There are a few rules that we follow, but the most important ones are to have fun and enjoy baking & eating cakes!
Follow our Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest pages where you can find all of our cakes, as well as inspiration for many other cakes. You can also click on the links below to take you to each of our cakes. If you have a blog and are interested in joining The Cake Slice Bakers and baking along with us, please send an email to thecakeslicebakers at gmail dot com for more details.
The Cake Slice Bakers also have a new Facebook group called The Cake Slice Bakers and Friends. This group is perfect for those who do not have a blog but want to join in the fun and bake through this book.
It is a new year and a new book - Gâteau: The Surprising Simplicity of French Cakes - and our choices for August 2023 were ~
Apple Cake - The Classic
Lemon Verbena Peach Yogurt Cake
Strawberry-Rhubarb Rouleau with Lemon Buttercream