This cake has a woodsy, nutty taste from the rosemary and browned butter and a bit of a crunch from the cornmeal. The quality vanilla used in the frosting is essential and it pairs with the tones of the rosemary so well and adds this kick of complexity to the nutty browned butter frosting. The cake itself is not overly sweet, and I added a splash of apple cider vinegar for lightness and a slightly acidic apple flavor. The apple cider vinegar also reacts with the baking powder and baking soda to start a chemical reaction that helps give the cake lift and lightness–a good thing when you want to cook with all whole grain flours.
Rosemary + Olive Oil Cake
1 1/4 cup sprouted whole wheat flour
1/2 cup cornmeal
1 tsp baking powder
3/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup raw turbinado cane sugar
1/2 cup olive oil
1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
3 tbsp fresh rosemary, chopped
Browned Butter Vanilla Frosting
1/2 cup butter
1 cup powdered sugar
1 tbsp vanilla
Oven 350* Start by making the browned butter. Chop up the butter and place it in a small metal pot, or stainless steel pan over medium heat. Stir occasionally, and notice that as all the butter melts a layer of foam forms on the surface. Continue to stir, paying attention to the smell and color of the butter. It will start to darken to an amber tone and smell nutty and rich. When the butter is browned, pour it into a small bowl and set aside.
In a small bowl, mix the flour, cornmeal, baking powder & soda, and salt. In another bowl whisk together the eggs and sugar until well incorporated. Add the olive oil and cider vinegar and mix well. Slowly start adding the dry mix to the wet mix, and then finish by stirring in the rosemary.
Place a piece of parchment paper in a small square cake pan and bake the cake for about 30 minutes, or until a fork comes out clean when inserted into the cake. Allow the cake to cool and then mix the powdered sugar and vanilla with the butter until smooth and creamy. Spread on the cake and garnish with extra chopped rosemary.