Set the oven and prepare the pan. Preheat the oven to 350°F, and line the inside of a 4½ x 8½ x 3 inch loaf pan with parchment paper. Lining this sort of pan with parchment can be tricky.Turn the loaf pan up side down and use a pencil to lightly outline the bottom and sides -- using a piece of parchment slightly larger than you think you'll need. Cut along the pencil lines and insert it into the pan. Then repeat this process in the opposite direction. (I like to use two separate pieces for each direction. so that it fits quite snugly.)
Prepare the lemons. After zesting a few of the lemons (to get 1½ tablespoons), slice all of them as thinly as you possibly can. Remove seeds as you go, and don't worry if you can't slice the entire lemon (it gets hard to hold and slice as it gets smaller).
Make the batter. In a medium-sized mixing bowl, combine ½ cup of the sugar with the olive oil, vanilla, lemon zest and salt. Blend until it's smooth. Then add the eggs and mix until they are fully incorporated, and the batter is once again, smooth.Now gently fold in the flour, almond meal, baking powder and baking soda. Mix until smooth and set aside.
Assemble. Sprinkle 1½ tablespoons of the remaining sugar over the bottom of the parchment-lined pan. Then in a single layer, line the bottom surface, and about 1/4 of the way up the sides of the pan with lemon slices. You will need to slice some of them in half for the sides -- placing the flat edge at the bottom edge of the pan. Evenly spread about half of the batter over the lemon slices, and carefully press another single layer of the lemon slices over this first layer of batter, and sprinkle them with the last 1½ tablespoons of sugar. Finally, evenly spread the remaining batter on top.
Bake. Bake in the preheated 350°F oven until the cake is golden brown, is beginning to crack, and will no longer jiggle when you move the pan -- about 45 minutes.
Cool. Let the cake cool in the pan for about 20 minutes or so. Then invert it onto a serving platter and very slowly and gently, peel away the parchment paper. Let it cool for at least another 45 minutes before slicing.
You can use a lemon other than a Meyer -- though, if you can get your hands on Meyer lemons, you'll appreciate their slightly sweeter taste and much thinner skin!Calorie count is only an estimate.
Keywords cake for breakfast, great for brunch
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