Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Le Gateau Piege

So I love Clotilde - I mean her food blog - Chocolate and Zucchini. When I was just starting out - (getting my feet wet in baking), Chocolate and Zucchini was one of the first food blogs I encountered while exploring the food blog world. Clotilde's anecdotes and her encounters with food were (and still is) extremely interesting and one can feel the enthusiasm and her passion in her food. Her blogging is also filled with humor - both subtle and clear.

Now, I'm a sucker for French cakes with cool titles.

One of the first recipes I saw in her blog was the recipe for an orange cake, known as Le Gateau Piege.  Looking at the list of ingredients, I was surprised to find that there weren't very many - which is always great thing, since it means less money to spend.
If I'm in a hurry, this is one of my to-go recipes for a cake as well. The flavor from the orange zest just perfumes the whole dish and your house or apartment. I mean, how bad can that be? It's fluffy, almost like a pancake, but with just a little bit of caramelization from the sprinkled sugar, which just adds that little extra finesse to the dish.

This is one of those cakes that took me less than 15 minutes to prepare and stick into the oven. That's why I love this cake so much. It's delicious and convenient - now that's a great combination in my book.

So give it a try and let me know how it comes out for you and how you like it - I promise you that you won't be disappointed.

The one major change I made to the recipe, is that I really wanted to make sure I tasted orange - I think if you make a cake with a fruit flavor, you should really be hit with the flavor. I zested at least 2 large oranges for this cake (might seem like a lot, but trust me, it's worth it). I also cut down on the sugar, since I figured that the orange juice would provide some sweetness.

Le Gateau Piege
Adapted from Chocolate and Zucchini (Clotilde rocks!)
Yield: 9-inch cake

1/2 cup + 2 tbsp butter
1/3 cup + 2 tbsp granulated suggar
Pinch of salt (Omit if using salted butter)
1 cup flour
1 tbsp baking powder
2 eggs
2 large oranges
1/2 cup of freshly squeezed orange juice (from the 2 oranges that you will zest)

1. Preheat oven to 350 F. Grease the bottom of the pan with butter (I usually would say cooking spray, but the sugar is not distributed as well).
2. Sprinkle a tbsp of sugar in the span and spread it by just rotating the pan back and forth.
3. Mix the softened butter and sugar.
4. Add the eggs and mix. Grate the zest from two oranges and mix it in.
5. Juice the oranges and add 1/2 cup of the juice to the batter - mix until smooth.
6. Sift dry ingredients into a bowl (flour, baking powder, salt) and then add it to the wet ingredients.
7. Fold the dry ingredients in until just combined.
8. Pour the ingredients into the cake pan and bake for 25-30 minutes until just golden brown.
9. Cool for 5 minutes and invert the cake onto a plate (this way the caramel doesn't cause the cake to stick to the pan).
10. Cool completely and then eat.

Here's what mine looked like in the pan:

This cake comes out really well. I've made this twice now and it has tasted great both times. 

Time to get ingredients = 5 minutes
Time to prepare the batter = 15 minutes
Time to bake = 25 minutes 
Time to cool = 5 minutes

Total time = 50 minutes. C'mon! How fast-paced is that?

Ah, the oranges remind me of the golden sun in California right now. I'm going out to enjoy it tomorrow!



  1. Kartik,
    I like chocolate and zucchini too. Your le gateau looks awesome. I love citrus in my baked goods.

  2. oh wow, yummm!!
    it's not even that bad for you, either.
    definitely classified as breakfast, right?! :)

  3. Didn't think about breakfast - but now that you mention it, I completely agree! It's relatively healthy, if you take a slice and share the rest :)

    Add a side of eggs and a bowl of oatmeal.


  4. Sounds awesome!! I think cakes with a lot of citrus zest are wonderful! I also like that this cake isn't loaded down with tons of sugar. I might have to give it a try sometime with coconut sap instead of cane sugar. Would be wonderful!! :)

  5. That cake sounds delicious! I love cakes with citrus, my family is Greek and the vast majority of Greek cakes require some lemon or orange zest added in. Yum!

  6. Eva, that's actually a pretty brilliant idea!! This could certainly be tried with other citrus fruits - lemons, grapefruits, limes.

    I will try making a few of these and I'll post them up when I get the chance.

    If you try this recipe and make variations, let me know - I always love to learn something new from everyone.

  7. The cake looks awesome! I love lemony cakes :)!