I had a tub of Vanilla Yogurt that needed using up yesterday and so I decided to bake it into a cake. A home must have a cake in it don't you think??? We were out of cake, so what's a gal to do but bake one!
I found a recipe on Epicurious for a French Yogurt Cake and I adapted it to what I had on hand with most delicious results. The original recipe called for plain yoghurt but I had vanilla and thought it would work well . . . I have always loved French Vanilla Ice Cream . . . but as I was baking this I found myself wondering what is it that makes French Vanilla . . . French Vanilla??? I had to find out.
This is the answer I found which came from my friend Bill Daley:
Vanilla bean varieties are often named for where they're grown, like Madagascar, Tahiti and Mexico. That's not the case with French vanilla. The name refers not to a vanilla variety but the classic French way of making ice cream using an egg custard base.
You can read his full article about it here in the Chicago Tribune where he writes a column entitled The Daley Question.
So . . . in order to make this a truly French Vanilla Yogurt Cake I tried to incorporate as much Vanilla into this as I could without it being overkill . . . so that it smelled gorgeous when it was baking . . . and it tasted gloriously rich and indulgent.
The good news is . . . it didn't need full fat or Greek yogurt like the original recipe . . . so it's also a bit lower in fat but still tastes fabulous and has a wonderful texture. I added to the scent and flavour of vanilla by adding a rich vanilla glaze to the top . . . and then grinding a bit of real vanilla pod over top with my vanilla grinder. Result! This is incredible.
*French Vanilla Yogurt Cake*Makes 8 servings
milk to thin
Once the cake is completely cooled whisk together all of the ingredients for the glaze until smooth, using only enough milk to give you a thick drizzle. Spoon this over the cake, allowing some to drizzle down the sides. Dust with a fine grating of vanilla pod if desired. Cut into slices to serve.