Saturday, April 24, 2010

Lemony Lemony Lemon Cake

[I added an ingredient here. Lemon emulsion can be ordered on line at Lorann Oils and the difference is worth the trouble. Unlike extract, the flavor doesn't lose any strength in the baking process. I've started using it with the cakes we sell in the village] Okay, here's the recipe for the lemon cake
.It's basically from the excellent blog, Tartelette,and its called The Ultimate Lemon Pound Cake. I'll give you the original recipe, minus the changes I made to account for high altitude. However, I add 2 teaspoons lemon extract to the butter-sugar mixture and a simple glaze to the finished cakes. I struggled with myself when I found the flower mold at a local store called "Now We're Cooking" because it was expensive at around $40 but its totally worth it. You'll never get that detail with a less expensive one. Speaking of which, to ensure that detail, I first sprayed it with baking spray and then took a small artists brush and made sure to get in all the crevices. Then I refrigerate the pan until my batter is ready.
Also it truly makes a huge difference to heat the eggs before using. Just put them into a small bowl and cover with hot water. Let them sit for 5 minutes. I heat the milk to room temp as well. If I make this cake in a sheet pan, I leave the cake in there when I pour the syrup over it.[mmmm,wet cake]. If you've lined the pan with foil, leaving extra on each side, its easy to pull it out after it cools.

2 3/4 cups all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 sticks unsalted butter at room temperature
2 cups sugar
6 large eggs
1 cup milk
1 teaspoon lemon emulsion
2 tablespoons lemon zest
1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
1/2 cup sugar

Preheat oven to 300F. Butter and flour a 12 cup Bundt pan.
Sift the flour,baking powder and salt together. Cream the butter and 1 and 3/4 cups sugar until pale and fluffy. Add the eggs,one at a time, beating well after each addition. Reduce the speed and add the flour mixture,alternating with the milk, beginning and ending with the flour. Stir in the lemon zest. Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 1 1/2 hours, or until a knife in the center comes out clean. Let cool in the pan for 15 minutes. Poke holes all over the cake with a wooden skewer.Let cool to room temperature in pan.
Meanwhile, bring the lemon juice and remaining sugar to a boil over medium high heat in a small saucepan, stirring till the sugar is dissolved. Let boil 1 minute.

If you are making flowers, the baking time is obviously reduced. Check after 10 minutes. I put my fingers on top of one of the flowers- when they're done, they are dry and firm.
To paint, I make a glaze of lemon juice and powdered sugar in as many cups as I want colors. Experiment with the thickness, you don't want it so thick that it hides the detail, and not so thin that the colors look weak. With small artists brushes, one for each color, I get creative. Have fun and Happy Mother's Day- Stephanie, I think your mother will love these!


  1. Psssst! You missed the sugar in the ingredients list.... :) 2 Cups sugar divided, right?

    Sounds pretty close to a lemon cake Mom used to make, but she would just glaze not make it damp.

    Hmmmm... "Now We're Cooking" sounds like a dangerous shop. We have one here called "The Chef's Edge". Have to put blinders on when we go in there.


  2. Got home from the studio and saw this. This blog got an enthusiastic out loud Yes! with two happy fists way up in the air. I am ravenous. I'm always starved after classes. And sadly those girls wear me out and they are the ones doing the work.

    We have a chain store here that sells baking tins. My personal fav is the giant castle.

  3. thank you thank you! What a thing to forget!

  4. Oh, and how much butter? ;)

  5. Good God! I make this every week- you'd think I'd get it right!!
    Good thing you are on the ball.

  6. Ok Nana. Going to give these a shot. I need to go out and find a fancy pan like you have. I do have a pan for making little loaves..maybe I will use that one and make the cake into little gold bars to make up for all the $$ she's laid out for over the years!!

    Happy Mother's day to you too Nana!!

  7. those will be great!Let me know how they turn out!

  8. Got home from hell job and just finished this. Making the cake, not eating it(though that will no doubt happen)). I have to say when you introduced the notion of a 'damp cake' I thought you were a little screwy, never having heard of such a thing before and not liking cake because no matter what it is always dry (which is why you eat it with ice cream, I assume- not that I don't enjoy that). Happy to be proven wrong that there is such a thing as a damp cake (I still thought the rosemary cake would turn out dry), though you already know you are a little screwy. There's just no disproving that, sorry. :)

  9. Tried it last night. Came out pretty good. Can't imagine it without the lemon extract, the zest alone would not have made it lemony enough, even with the sauce. Had to go out and find a bundt pan, I never had one, and Linda's disappeared in the move (there's still a box missing she figures).

    We really enjoyed it, and didn't find an egg shell in it. I dropped an egg half shell and it got mixed..... Got most of it out, but still spotted a piece or two when I cleaned the bowl out, so figure there is one or two still lurking.

    Big problem was I was pretty rushed, we got in the house late, so had to put the whole chicken on the rotisserie, clean the pan, mix the cake, clean and zest the lemons, mix the cake, trim the brocolli, mix the cake.... etc. Couldn't postpone as the liquid ingredients and butter were out of the fridge and room temp, and the chicken thawed.

  10. Sounds like it was a great dinner!

  11. Was pretty good for such a rush job.

    Probably should have beaten the cake a little more, it was a touch dense.

  12. Asked Eiri to make this for me and she said "I'll have to get her to give her the /real/ recipe with all the lemon in it." ;)

    And BTW, the cake Biltmore is making for us /was/ lemon enough! (just barely) ;) So half will be lemon filling, half will be buttercream with peach preserves and fresh chunks of peach. Still wish we could have had one of your cakes. Must order some little bites soon! :)