Tag Archives: lemon

Extra Lemony Pound Cake

I love lemon. I love dark chocolate, too. I would say they are tied for my favorite flavor.

I’m not alone in my love of lemons.  My father loved lemon. He used to tell us about eating lemons like apples when he was a kid. My mother loves lemon. My sister loves lemon. I think there’s a chance this might be genetic.

I have been on the hunt for the perfect lemon cake for a while and this might be it.

The first cake I found was Glorious Treats’ Lemony Lemon Bread. Oh, my, this is lemony! I made this at Christmas in small loaves to give as gifts. Everyone said they loved it. It is an excellent bread but with 2 cups of butter and 8 eggs, I needed to find one with less calories.

The second find was Becky Charms & Co. Lemony Lemonies Lemon Brownies. Again, an excellent lemon flavor, but more of a brownie consistency. I will make this one again. But I’m looking for a cake.

Lemon Verbena

Lemon Verbena

Now I’ve found  Ina’s lemon pound cake from The Charm of Home. This is a lemon pound cake infused with a lemon syrup and then glazed with a lemon glaze. Believe it or not I found a way to add more lemon flavor. I added lemon verbena to the syrup and let it steep for a few minutes. There was a noticeable difference in the flavor. Yum!

Lemon Pound Cake

One common theme among all these recipes is the fresh lemon juice (a must), and lots of lemon zest. The more you add of these two ingredients, the more lemon flavor. And if you have trouble with the zest clumping on your beater, try processing the zest into the sugar in the recipe in your food processor. This gets the zest well mixed into the sugar and makes it easier to use. You can even make this lemon sugar ahead. The longer it sits, the stronger the lemon flavor.

Lemon Pound Cake

Cake:
1 stick butter, at room temperatureGlazed Lemon Pound Cake
1 c vanilla sugar
2 large eggs, room temperature
2 T grated lemon zest
1 ½ c all-purpose flour
¼ t baking powder
¼ t baking soda
½ t salt
1/8 c lemon juice
1/3 c + 1 T buttermilk, room temp
½ t pure vanilla extract

Syrup:
¼ c sugar
¼ c lemon juice
Two 2” sprigs of lemon verbena

Glaze:
1 c confectioner’s sugar, sifted
1 T + 1 t freshly squeezed lemon juice

Cake: Preheat oven to 350˚.  Grease an 8 1/2 x 4 1/2″ loaf pan.  Line bottom and sides with parchment paper. Grease again and flour pan.

Cream butter and 1 c granulated sugar in bowl of mixer fitted with paddle, until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes.  With mixer on medium speed, add eggs, 1 at a time, and lemon zest.

Sift together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a bowl.  In another bowl, combine 1/8 c lemon juice, buttermilk, and vanilla.  Add flour and buttermilk mixtures alternately to batter, beginning and ending with flour.  Pour batter into pan, smooth top, and bake for 45 minutes to an hour, until a cake tester comes out clean.

Syrup: Combine ¼ c granulated sugar with ¼ c lemon juice in a small saucepan and cook over low heat until sugar dissolves.  Remove from heat.  Add lemon verbena and allow to steep. When cake is done, allow to cool 10 minutes.  Remove from pan and set on rack over sheet pan; spoon lemon syrup over.  Allow cake to cool completely.

Glaze: combine confectioner’s sugar and lemon juice in a bowl, mixing with a wire whisk until smooth.  Pour over top of cake and allow glaze to drizzle down sides.

Adapted from The Charm of Home

When Life (or Costco) Gives You Lemons, Part II

Ahhhh, limoncello!

I made my first batch of limoncello, a couple of years ago. It was good but I felt it could be better. So it’s off to the internet to search for recipes. Most of the recipe differences came down to how many lemons to use and how much simple syrup to add at the end. I settled on combining recipes from Bell’alimento and Lidia’s Italy.

This project began two months ago with the zesting of the lemons and then using the now naked lemons (before they could go bad) to make Faye’s famous lemon tart.

Zesting lemons

The vodka for the limoncello was recommended by the man at the liquor store – he said the potato vodka was the best. Not having any experience with vodka, I took his word for it.

Zest in vodka

Add the vodka to the bottle with the lemon peel, shake gently to mix, place in a cool, dark area – and then wait.  For a month.  That was February.

At the end of February I made the simple syrup, let it cool and then added it to the vodka bottle. Shake gently to mix with the other ingredients – and then wait.  For another month.

Finally, at the end of March I strained the liquid and bottled the limoncello. It is a lovely clear yellow color and tastes great.

Bottled Limoncello

But I did not quite think through how I was going to get all those lemon peels out of the vodka bottle. I finally used a wooden skewer and my finger to get them all out.

It seems a shame to throw all those vodka infused lemon peels out. Hmmm, there must be something I can do with them.   I’ll keep you posted.

Limoncello

750 ml potato vodka
10 lemons – peeled
3 c sugar
4 ½ c water

Wash and pat dry the lemons. Use a vegetable peeler to zest them, making sure to omit the white pith. (The pith makes the limoncello bitter.)

Stir the lemon peels into the vodka in a glass bottle or jar. Cover, and keep in a cool, dark place for 30 days. (There is no need to stir or mix the liquid.)  When it is ready, the liquid will smell strongly of lemon rinds and be a deep-yellow color.

At the end of the month, bring water and sugar to a boil and boil for 5 to 7 minutes; let cool.

Add sugar syrup to the vodka and lemon zest, stir, and let rest for an additional 30 days, to let the flavors further mellow and blend with the sugar syrup.

Strain the limoncello through a moistened cheesecloth or coffee filters. Discard the lemon zest, pour the strained limoncello into your choice of bottle, and seal tightly.

Note: Limoncello is best served chilled. Bottles can be kept in the freezer.

Adapted from Lidia’s Italy.