• 3/4 cup olive oil (extra-virgin - get the best quality fruity EVOO you can find), plus additional for greasing pan shopping list
  • 1 large lemon shopping list
  • 1 cup cake flour (not self-rising) shopping list
  • 5 large eggs, separated, reserving 1 white for another use shopping list
  • 3/4 cup plus 1 1/2 tablespoons sugar (I use baker's fine for the 3/4 C and raw for the 1 1/2 T) shopping list
  • Special equipment: a 9-inch (24-cm) springform pan; parchment paper shopping list

How to make it

  • Put oven rack in middle position and preheat oven to 350°F. Grease springform pan with some oil, then line bottom with a round of parchment paper. Oil parchment.
  • Finely grate enough lemon to measure 1 1/2 teaspoons and whisk together with flour. Halve lemon, then squeeze and reserve 1 1/2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice.
  • Beat together yolks and 1/2 cup sugar in a large bowl with an electric mixer at high speed until thick and pale, about 3 minutes. Reduce speed to medium and add olive oil (3/4 cup) and reserved lemon juice, beating until just combined (mixture may appear separated). Using a wooden spoon, stir in flour mixture (do not beat) until just combined.
  • Beat egg whites (from 4 eggs) with 1/2 teaspoon salt in another large bowl with cleaned beaters at medium-high speed until foamy, then add 1/4 cup sugar a little at a time, beating, and continue to beat until egg whites just hold soft peaks, about 3 minutes.
  • Gently fold one third of whites into yolk mixture to lighten, then fold in remaining whites gently but thoroughly.
  • Transfer batter to springform pan and gently rap against work surface once or twice to release any air bubbles. Sprinkle top evenly with remaining 1 1/2 tablespoons sugar. Bake until puffed and golden and a wooden pick or skewer inserted in center of cake comes out clean, about 45 minutes. Cool cake in pan on a rack 10 minutes, then run a thin knife around edge of pan and remove side of pan. Cool cake to room temperature, about 1 1/4 hours. Remove bottom of pan and peel off parchment, then transfer cake to a serving plate.

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