Daring Bakers Challenge : Green Tea, Lemon and Blackberry Opera Cake

It was only after I caught myself licking a slick of lemony buttercream off the wooden spoon that I paused to ponder the sanity behind my decision to sign up as a Daring Baker. Party cake, cheesecake pops and now L’Opera. I mean, what was I thinking?! This can only end one way, and that way is, fatly.

Ah well. Through the miracle of friendly fabrics and prudent shopping, the clothes still fit, and afterall, life is meant to be lived, right? Everything in moderation, I say. So here’s a modest tease of a slice of Opera cake, flavoured with green tea (maccha), lemon and blackberry.

I don’t often find myself eating this kind of cake, but love it for it’s angular beauty and it’s unashamed use of bold flavours, rich buttercream and ganache. This was my first time making an Opera cake that wasn’t dark chocolate and coffee flavoured. The experience was almost.. liberating. To be able to pick from such a wide spectrum of flavours might seem daunting, but I always knew it was going to have green tea as it’s base flavour. Everything else, just seemed to fall into place. πŸ™‚

This month’s DB challenge is dedicated to honorary Daring Baker member, Barbara of Winos and Foodies. To create your own version of L’Opera, you might want to check out the hosts’ and co-hosts’ pages for the recipe. Thanks guys – it was a great and truly indulgent challenge!


  1. courtney said,

    May 28, 2008 @ 7:47 am

    I love your flavors. I wont tell you how much I gained since joing this group and blogging. But creations such as these make me happy.Beautiful work.

  2. steph (whisk/spoon) said,

    May 28, 2008 @ 7:54 am

    that is an absolutely stunning slice of opera!

  3. megan said,

    May 28, 2008 @ 8:12 am

    I beleave it is in the DB oath to not worry about calories, because, it is a once a month challange. πŸ™‚ Your flavors sound yummy!

  4. Dolores said,

    May 28, 2008 @ 8:38 am

    Ah… but sneaking a little buttercream’s one of the best perks of daring bakerdom. Macha and blackberry… i love it. Great job!

  5. Cakelaw said,

    May 28, 2008 @ 9:17 am

    Green tea, lemon and blackberry sounds like an amazing combination, and taht slice of cake looks so perfect and neat. Lovely!

  6. Lorraine E said,

    May 28, 2008 @ 9:48 am

    Oh WOW that looks perfect! It’s making me so hungry right now

  7. maybelles mom said,

    May 28, 2008 @ 10:00 am

    AH, i made green tea too. (actually we did too.) I thought the green tea was fantastic. Yours looks so pretty…

  8. rainbowbrown said,

    May 28, 2008 @ 10:08 am

    Jeez! I love it. I love it. Beautiful.

  9. Aran said,

    May 28, 2008 @ 10:14 am

    Great job! I made a similar opera a couple of months ago with green tea, lemon and chocolate. I loved it then and I love this one now!

  10. sophie said,

    May 28, 2008 @ 10:35 am

    Hehe! I just saw this and thought…oh no! I forgot to post! I completely forgot that you’re a day ahead…I had to look at my calendar to make sure it wasn’t the 28th :D. This looks really pretty and delicate, I love the colors. It looks like one of those fancy desserts that’s almost too pretty to eat, except it has too much of that ‘delicious’ factor to pass-up :). You did a wonderful job.

  11. Judy (Judy's Gross Eats) said,

    May 28, 2008 @ 10:50 am

    Your Opera looks and sounds divine. Someday I’ve got to get my hands on some matcha.

  12. Eva said,

    May 28, 2008 @ 2:40 pm

    Your opera cake looks simply perfect! Needless to say, mine won’t be recognized as a member of the same family. Will blog about it tonight…

  13. Lauren said,

    May 28, 2008 @ 4:24 pm

    Your opera cake looks so yummy and professional!

  14. Christie @ fig&cherry said,

    May 28, 2008 @ 6:46 pm

    Haha – Fatly – love it! That is the best made up word, ever. I am stealing that from you, clever person πŸ™‚

  15. Clumbsy Cookie said,

    May 28, 2008 @ 9:03 pm

    It’s so beautiful! Love the powder on top, makes it so elegant!

  16. Gretchen Noelle said,

    May 28, 2008 @ 10:38 pm

    Great job on the challenge, your flavor combination sounds delicious!

  17. Lara said,

    May 28, 2008 @ 10:44 pm

    Yours look so tasty! I LOVE that people used green tea in their cakes – what a creative idea!

  18. Andrea said,

    May 28, 2008 @ 11:52 pm

    Your cake is very striking! What a creative flavor combination, too!

  19. Zita said,

    May 28, 2008 @ 11:56 pm

    aww..so love matcha…but I can’t find the powder matcha here… hiks.. your flavors combo is exceptional πŸ™‚

  20. Susan/Wild Yeast said,

    May 29, 2008 @ 12:15 am

    The flavor combination sounds delicious and your cake is just stunning!

  21. Sophie said,

    May 29, 2008 @ 12:31 am

    This is in response to your comment, I wanted to make sure you got your question answered and wasn’t sure if I should respond on my page or yours, so I thought I’d respond in both places :). I actually made the cake dairy free by using vegan ingredients. Luckily, I live in the city where Whole Foods was founded, and they always seem to have great dairy-free ingredients in stock. I used all Earth Balance Ingredients. I used their vegan butter and shortening (both are free of hydrogenated oils, so the shortening, in particular is healthier than crisco :). You can read about these products here: http://www.earthbalance.net/product.html. The Earth Balance buttery sticks and shortening are right next to each other :). Hope that helps :D.

  22. Kim said,

    May 29, 2008 @ 1:11 am

    Just beautiful, I love the flavors how interesting. Well done!
    I just have to try Matcha.

  23. lou @ the higher nest said,

    May 29, 2008 @ 1:49 am

    I must admit I’m not a fan of green tea, but your cake looks divine!

  24. Lori said,

    May 29, 2008 @ 2:05 am

    Love the flavor combinations and the cake looks so neat! I liked the angularness as well. I hadnt really put that into words until I read your blog. I tossed around doing matcha and mint for quite a while before deciding on raspberry and lime.

  25. breadchick said,

    May 29, 2008 @ 2:29 am

    I love the green and light color contrast. Green tea is quickly becoming one of my favourite sweet combos.

  26. Dana McCauley said,

    May 29, 2008 @ 6:20 am

    Your color scheme is very fresh and pretty – somehow your version, using these colours and flavors, seems more Asian than French. Cool update!

  27. MyKitchenInHalfCups said,

    May 29, 2008 @ 7:48 am

    Green really is just Spring! This is really a gorgeous cake. Wonderful flavors.

  28. Sophie said,

    May 29, 2008 @ 7:51 am

    It’s actually a lot like margarine, except it’s not hydrogenated. It melts faster than butter, but tastes just like it :).

  29. mir said,

    May 29, 2008 @ 8:15 am

    That is beautiful and mighty tasty looking too!

  30. Ruth E said,

    May 29, 2008 @ 9:23 am

    Your opera cake looks beautifully elegant!!!! What perfect layers. I love the combination of flavours you had too!

  31. Jade said,

    May 29, 2008 @ 10:18 am

    Wow you cake looks amazing! I am so jelous of everybody who got to make a matcha jaconde…why do the people at the asian grocers seem to have no idea what I’m talking about??

  32. jasmine said,

    May 29, 2008 @ 10:19 am

    Fabulous combination. V. elegant….


  33. giz said,

    May 29, 2008 @ 1:18 pm

    Your cake looks amazing and the flavours are wonderful In a hundred years I wouldn’t have put it together. I also laughed at your description of forgiving fabric. The good news was the instruction said to eat the cake cold – so I cut it all in serving sized pieces and froze the whole thing.

  34. Jen said,

    May 29, 2008 @ 4:00 pm


  35. Jen said,

    May 29, 2008 @ 4:17 pm

    If I hadn’t decided that I may not make this cake for a long time… at least not until winter comes around and I’m not using my oven in 90 degree weather… I will definitely have to use your recipe and flavorings! bravo! πŸ™‚

  36. Tartelette said,

    May 29, 2008 @ 5:01 pm

    You have outdone yourself! This is just beautiful and stunning…delicate and lip smacking good. In case you could not tell…I am hooked!

  37. Suzana said,

    May 29, 2008 @ 6:39 pm

    That’s a very classy cake! I love how the different layers come together, and the flavour combo is great. πŸ™‚

  38. Helen said,

    May 29, 2008 @ 11:03 pm

    Oh, your opera cake looks so much better than mine! What a challenge! This was my second challenge and I was very daunted but it came out better than expected at least. The colours in yours are fabulous.

  39. Sheltie Girl said,

    May 30, 2008 @ 1:22 am

    You did a fabulous job on your cake. It’s simply beautiful. I had a great time making this challenge…so much fun.

    Natalie @ Gluten a Go Go

  40. Nora said,

    May 30, 2008 @ 10:12 am

    very Very elegant!

  41. Hannah said,

    May 31, 2008 @ 10:57 am

    Incredible! Your cake is lovely, the flavors sound delicious, and I must say I love the photography. Everything is so crisp and clean… Excellent work!

  42. linda said,

    June 1, 2008 @ 12:48 am

    Love the flavours and love how it looks with the pretty colours.

  43. Gabi said,

    June 2, 2008 @ 1:38 am

    Wow- that beautifull angular- loved your post and use of the green tea- bold and beautiful combination of flavours! Brava!!!

  44. Barbara said,

    June 2, 2008 @ 10:16 am

    Your cake is simply gorgeous.

  45. Rebecca said,

    June 2, 2008 @ 1:29 pm

    Green tea, lemon, and blackberry–yum! Your layers came out so perfectly. Well done!

  46. Shari said,

    June 4, 2008 @ 7:32 am

    I was licking the buttercream too much too, but boy it was good! Your cake is stunning!
    Shari@Whisk: a food blog

  47. sandra avital said,

    June 17, 2008 @ 4:52 pm

    How could I miss this one??? Absolutely gorgeous!! Wonderful job!

  48. Raf said,

    August 11, 2008 @ 7:39 pm

    Very nice.
    How did you obtain green tea flavour in jaconde??
    I understand that the filling is lemon butter cream and blackberry jam. Is that correct?? Kind regards

  49. Y said,

    August 12, 2008 @ 12:42 am

    Hi Raf! I added green tea powder (maccha) to the mix before baking. It gives it the flavour as well as the colour. And yes, I used lemon buttercream (Dorie Greenspan’s recipe from when the Daring Bakers made her Perfect Party Cake) and also incorporated a thin layer of blackberry jam. Overall I found the flavours worked really well together.

  50. WL said,

    September 28, 2015 @ 8:20 pm

    Hi! I love your cake very much, may I have this recipe, please? πŸ™‚

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