Karithopita comes from the Greek word karithi which means walnut, and pita which means some sort of pie or cake. Most often you will come across this Greek walnut cake drenched in syrup. Now don’t get me wrong, I love the syrupy type if I go out and order it, but for home I mostly prefer something fluffier and lighter without all that syrup. Oh, and did I mention this type is much easier and quicker to make?
There are numerous versions of this cake. Some are made with butter, others with olive oil, you can add different amount of walnuts, instead of syrup you can add powdered sugar as I did here. This is a very versatile recipe.
For this version, I used olive oil and orange juice (instead of milk), and as I was not going to add syrup I also included a few mini dark chocolate chips to sweeten it up a bit and the walnuts were finely ground resulting in a fluffy smooth cake. Apart from tasting good, you will get some of the good healthy fats from the walnuts and olive oil and there is no butter or milk . So not only tasty but heart-healthy too!
Greek Walnut Cake with Olive Oil and Dark Chocolate Chips – Karithopita
- ½ cup olive oil
- ½ cup brown sugar
- ½ cup white sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1/2 cup orange juice
- ¼ cup brandy optional
- 1 ½ cup flour
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ½ cup ground walnuts
- ¼ cup mini dark chocolate chips
- Powdered sugar for dusting the cake
- Preheat the oven at 350 degrees F (180 C)
- In a large bowl cream the olive oil and the sugars.
- Add the eggs one by one and mix well.
- Add the rest of the wet ingredients (orange juice and or brandy) and mix well.
- Ina smaller bowl, mix the flour with the baking powder, baking soda and cinnamon.
- Add the flour mixture to the olive oil mixture and mix just enough so that the flour has been blended in.
- Add the walnuts and chocolate chips and mix until they are spread throughout the whole batter.
- Pour batter in a 9 inch springform pan (in this photo I had used an 8 inch, which was a bit small hence the dome).
- Bake for about 35-40 minutes until a toothpick inserted in the cake comes out clean.
- Let it cool, and dust with powdered sugar.