Friday, July 2, 2010

Lemony Lemon Cake

Yes, I'm on a lemon kick. And, this cake is le-mon-y through and through!

I saw this cake a while back as I was flipping through TV channels. Martha Stewart and a guest were making it. Usually, I can only take Martha in extremely small doses, but her guest caught my attention when he mentioned lemon curd. At that point, I had never tried lemon curd and was curious, so I decided to watch the rest of the segment. The cake looked pretty amazing, and I mentally filed it away thinking I would make it someday.

Months later, I finally tried lemon curd, which I have renamed lemon spread. I love the stuff, and I thought it was now time to try this cake out. And, I owed a culinary creation to one of the student employees at work for winning a contest I was in charge of. I offered a fabulous homemade dessert as the grand prize.

As far as cakes go, this one did require some work, but it wasn't too difficult. However, judging by the oohs and aahs and overwhelmingly outstanding reviews, it was well worth the effort.

Looking at this photo, I think I finally need to invest in
a cake stand.

I was surprised how good those candied lemon slices were, too.

This is my boss enjoying every last crumb.
I think I'll make another cake around raise

Lemony Lemon Cake
(adapted from Martha Stewart)
  • 1 cup unsalted butter
  • 2 ½ cups flour
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon lemon zest
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 large eggs plus 3 large egg yolks (save whites for frosting)
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1 lemon, thinly sliced and seeded

Preheat oven to 350°. Butter and flour to 8" round cake pans.

In a medium bowl, whisk flour, baking soda, salt, and lemon zest.

In a large bowl, beat butter and 1 ½ cups sugar until light and fluffy. With mixer on low, beat in eggs and yolks, one at a time. Beat in 2 Tbsps. lemon juice. Alternately beat in flour mixture and buttermilk beginning and ending with the flour mixture. Mix until just combined.

Divide batter between the two pans and smooth out tops. Bake 32 to 35 minutes or until toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Let cool in pans for 10 minutes before inverting onto a wire rack.
While cakes are baking, bring ½ cup of sugar and ½ cup water to a boil in a saucepan. Add lemon slices and simmer 25 minutes. Transfer lemon slices to waxed paper. Stir ¼ cup lemon juice into the syrup.

Using a tooth pick, poke holes in warm cakes on rack. Brush with lemon syrup. Continue until all syrup is soaked into the cakes. Let cool completely.

Place one cake upside down on cake plate. Spread top with lemon curd butter. Place second cake on top right side up. Prepare frosting and frost cake. Decorate top with candied lemon slices.

Lemon curd butter
  • ¾ cup unsalted butter
  • 1 ⅓ cups sugar
  • ⅔ cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1 Tbsp. grated lemon peel
  • ⅛ tsp. salt
  • 5 large eggs
Cut butter into tablespoon sized pieces. Add butter, sugar, lemon juice, lemon peel and salt to a medium-sized saucepan. Stir over medium heat until butter is completely melted and the sugar is dissolved. Remove from heat and let cool slightly. In a bowl, beat eggs. Gradually add eggs to saucepan while whisking. Return to stove over medium-low heat and continue to whisk for about 2 minutes or until curd thickens. Strain curd spread through a sieve into a bowl. Cover by pressing plastic wrap directly onto the surface of the curd butter. Chill overnight.

Whipped Lemon Frosting
  • 3 large egg whites
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • Pinch of salt
  • ⅓ cup water
  • 2 Tbsps. fresh lemon juice
In a heatproof bowl set over (not in) a saucepan of simmering water, combine 3 large egg whites, ¾ cup sugar, a pinch salt and ⅓ cup water. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until sugar has dissolved, about 2 to 3 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl. Using an electric mixer, beat on medium-high until glossy, stiff peaks form. Reduce speed to low, add lemon juice, and beat just until combined. Use immediately.


  1. curd curd curd curd curd curd curd curd curd
    luxurious snacks!


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