Lemon-cardamom oil cake (baked in air fryer)

Most of the bundt/cake recipes I know are butter-based. But I remember that when I was a child, butter was a luxury and my mother was making most of the cakes using oil as fat.

The best oil to use for this cake is by far olive oil. However, the cake can be made with any vegetable oil. I had in my pantry an open bottle of peanut oil and I wanted to use it, so this is the oil I used for this cake.

When I bought my air fryer I had no clue how versatile such a mini oven could be for baking cakes. Actually, they turn out even better than in my good old kitchen oven. There is however a limitation to baking in the air fryer and that is the size. My air fryer drawer is 24 cm wide, so only pans under this dimension can fit inside.

As for the pan, some time ago this silicone daisy mould caught my eye and I fell for it. However, I had plenty of cake pans and moulds and I was hesitant to extend my collection because of the limited space to store them. With the air fryer, I had to evaluate all the pans I owned and select the ones fitting the drawer. I did not count many for this purpose. That was the moment when I recalled this small daisy silicone mould left waiting on my wish list. The next step was obvious,  this beautifully shaped mould joined my collection.

The recipe is an adapted one. The original one is with orange, not lemon-based. As it is more often to have lemon in the house rather than oranges I changed to lemon. I also had to adapt other quantities like (you guessed what if you know me...) sugar and improve the structure in the absence of sugar by adding more flour. 

I am very happy with the result. It is a super moist cake, not very sweet and with a distinct aroma due to the cardamom.


  • 300g all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1/2 tablespoon baking soda
  • 3 eggs
  • 100g sugar
  • 213g vegetable oil
  • 1 tablespoon cardamom
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • zest of one lemon + juice of half of the lemon
  • 300ml milk
  • (optional) 1/2 teaspoon of cocoa powder for decoration (the middle of the daisy)
  • (optional) caramel sauce - only for decoration
  1. In a bowl, mix dry ingredients (flour, baking powder, baking soda).
  2. In the mixer bowl, add the eggs and sugar and mix until lightly foaming.
  3. Add slowly the oil, cardamom, salt, zest and lemon juice and continue to mix until they are well combined.
  4. Add alternatively the milk and the dry ingredients and mix just until well combined. Do not over-mix.
  5. Pour this composition into a pan. If you use a silicone pan as I did, I recommend putting the pan first in the air fryer drawer and just after pouring the composition.
    To create the dark centre of the daisy, I took 2 tablespoons of the composition and mixed it with cocoa powder. Then I poured this one into the centre of the pan before filling in with the rest of the batter.
  6. Bake in the air fryer at 160ÂșC for 50 minutes or until a stick inserted in the middle of the cake turns out clean.
  7. Remove the pan from the air fryer drawer and let it cool completely. I really recommend not hurrying up and unmoulding the cake as it will fall down a bit and destroy the beautiful shape.

Recipe adapted from "The Mediterranean dish" by Suzy Karadesheh, page 268.


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