Fig and Yogurt Cake

Yogurt and Fig Cake

One of my favorite things about following a recipe is making changes, substituting ingredients based on the season and leftovers in my fridge. Flattened breads and fallen, runny cakes, however, have taught me not to be so cavalier about switching out ingredients when baking. I’ve learned to be on guard, measuring each ingredient to the grain.

Local cakemeister Annamarie Asher’s Lusciously Lemony Cake, was a big hit a few weeks ago. She recently sent me a Dorie Greenspan article that included a recipe for a Yogurt Cake with Orange Marmalade.

Ms. Greenspan received the recipe from a French friend whom, Ms. Greenspan noted, more than likely received the recipe from her Gallic grand-mere. I doubt the original writer used yogurt and marmalade in the recipe but I appreciate the modern update.

Fresh figs are in season now and I’ve noticed them at Fresh Seasons Market, Whole Foods and Plum Market. I love the combination of fresh figs and yogurt so I added an update of my own. The figs were so delicious in this cake, I wished I had added more. I also substituted orange zest for the lemon zest and fig preserves for the orange marmalade. These tweaks lent a seasonal twist to the recipe and I happily report the cake survived beautifully.

One thing I love about cakes such as this is they freeze well. I plan to make another this weekend for Thanksgiving. I can savor this cake for a good two weeks, if tightly wrapped and refrigerated. I imagine it would be divine with a dollop of freshly whipped cream enhanced with a liqueur, such as Grand Marnier to complement the orange zest.

This cake would be a fine finale to a Sept. 2 dinnerFeed, Grilled Pork Tenderloin with Fruity Frisée Salad. I quote Annamarie in saying “The perfect cake is one you would enjoy eating for breakfast.” This certainly meets that criteria!

Recipe: Yogurt and Fig Cake


  • Unsalted butter as needed for greasing loaf pan
  • 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup plain whole-milk yogurt, such as Greek-strained Fage
  • 1 cup superfine sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon finely grated orange zest
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 cup washed and diced figs, such as Black Mission Figs plus sliced whole figs for garnish, if desired
  • 1/4 cup fig preserves (other fruit marmalades may be substituted)


  1. Position rack in center of oven and preheat oven to 350˚.
  2. Generously butter metal loaf pan (apx. 9X5X3-inches). Sift flour, baking powder, and salt into a medium bowl. Combine yogurt, sugar, eggs, orange zest and vanilla in large bowl; whisk until well-blended.
  3. Gradually whisk in dry ingredients. Using rubber spatula, fold in oil. Transfer batter to prepared pan and place pan on baking sheet. Place baking sheet in oven and bake until cake begins to pull away from sides of pan and tester inserted into center comes out clean, about 40-50 minutes.
  4. Cool cake in an on rack 5 minutes. Cut around pan sides to loosen cake. Turn cake out onto rack. Turn cake upright on rack and cool completely.
  5. Stir fig preserves and 1 teaspoon water in small saucepan over medium heat. Brush 1/2 of hot preserves over cake. Arrange sliced figs on top of cake. Dollop remaining glaze over figs. Let cake cool and set.

Active time: 20 minutes

Baking time: 40-50 minutes

Yield: 8 servings

Copyright © Peggy Lampman’s dinnerFeed.

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