March 2, 2015
Mignardise
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gâteau au yaourt sans yaourt
(yoghurt-less yoghurt cake)
Gâteau au yaourt is a French tradition dating all the way back to, maybe, 1950. At least that what one reference that no longer shows up on the Internet said. Different websites describe it as being so easy that even a child can make it, or being child’s play, or being the first recipe taught to French children. Part of the simplicity lies in the fact the empty yoghurt container, usually with a 200 ml (634 fl oz) capacity, is used for most of the measuring. The ingredients are easy to combine in a bowl with a wooden spoon or spatula, no fancy appliances are required. The simplest of cake pans can be used for the baking.
By way of example, here’s the ingredient list from the Cuisine A‑Z website
1 pot de yaourt (garder le pot pour le reste de la recette)
2 œufs
3 pots de farine
2 pots de sucre
1 pot d’huile
1 sachet de levure chimique
or in translation
1 pot of plain yoghurt (save the pot for the remainder of the recipe)
2 eggs
3 pots of flour
2 pots of sugar
1 pot oil
1 packet of baking powder
The measurements are all pots, packets and pieces.
This cake is so simple it begged to be made more complicated, and I’m not the first to think so. Two friends with blogs, Ken Broadhurst and Clotilde Dusoulier, have posted recipes for more complicated yoghurt cakes on their websites.
Of course, all these recipes make too much batter for my use as a mignardise. Consequently, my recipe is miniaturized. On the day I first started to make the recipe I had a problem: no yoghurt. Needing less than a couple of tablespoons for one cake meant that even the smallest plain‑yoghurt container size would provide enough raw material for many cakes. So I decided to substitute some heavy cream, which I always have on hand. Thus the title of this recipe.
40 ml (123 T)
heavy cream
40 ml (123 T)
neutral vegetable oil
66 g (13 c)
finely granulated sugar
14 ent
vanilla extract
70 g (12 c)
all‑purpose flour
20 g (212 T)
cashew flour
½ t
baking powder
1 pinch
fine salt
1 large
egg
triple sec, or other liquor, as required
1. Preheat oven to 200 °C (390 °F). Butter a mini‑loaf pan.
2. Mix the cream, oil, and sugar together with a wooden spatula or spoon until smooth. Add the flours, baking powder, and salt. Mix again. Finally, add in the egg, and mix until the batter is smooth. Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan. Rap the pan sharply on your counter to coax out any air bubbles.
3. Bake the cake until fully cooked, about 30 minutes.
4. Remove the cake from its pan, and cool on a rack.
5. Cut the cake into 2‑cm (45‑in) thick slices. Snack on the end pieces.
6. For eating later, separately wrap and freeze each slice.
7. To serve, cut each slice into four portions. Drizzle about 1 ml (15 T) of triple sec on each piece before serving.
Note: Replace the triple sec with your favorite liquor or flavored syrup, or leave the cake unadulterated.
Yield: 24 portions.

© 2015 Peter Hertzmann. All rights reserved.