Conde Nast Digital Archiveby Andrew Knowlton, Bon Appétit
There are two kinds of cooks: those who bake, and those who become paralyzed at the thought of precise measurements, gentle folding, and offset spatulas. I'm the second type. My baking failures are numerous, but quick breads I can do. I like to think of my current obsession, French yogurt cake, as a healthier pound cake with a bit more going on (thanks to yogurt and lemon zest). How easy is it to make? Put it this way: It's often the first dessert French children learn to prepare. But it doesn't taste easy. For a while there, I was baking a loaf a week to have on hand for a sweet breakfast (yes, breakfast; it's even better a day old), an afternoon snack, or a last-minute treat for a crying three-year-old. I'm pretty sure my daughter thinks I buy it at the pastry shop down the street from our apartment. Not bad for someone who doesn't bake.
French Yogurt Cake
Think of this as a healthier pound cake with a bit more going on (thanks to yogurt and lemon zest).
Nonstick vegetable oil spray
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
2 teaspoons baking powder
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1 cup sugar
1 tablespoon finely grated lemon zest
3/4 cup whole-milk Greek yogurt
1/2 cup vegetable oil
2 large eggs
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
8 1/2 x 4 1/4-inch loaf pan
Preheat oven to 350°. Coat pan with vegetable oil spray. Dust with flour; tap out excess.
Whisk 1 1/2 cups flour, baking powder, and kosher salt in a medium bowl.
Using your fingers, rub sugar with lemon zest in a large bowl until sugar is moist. Add yogurt, oil, eggs, and vanilla extract; whisk to blend. Fold in dry ingredients just to blend.
Pour batter into prepared pan; smooth top. Bake until top of cake is golden brown and a tester inserted into center comes out clean, 50-55 minutes.
Let cake cool in pan on a wire rack for 15 minutes. Invert onto rack; let cool completely. DO AHEAD: Can be made 3 days ahead. Store airtight at room temperature.More from Bon Appétit:
10 Snacks You Thought Were Healthy But Really Aren't
25 One-Bite Appetizers
10 Quick and Easy School-Night Dinners
10 Ways to Make Better Brownies